Technology is a fantastic resource for family members who are scattered across the United States but want to retain their close relationships. From calling on the phone to using tablets and laptops for video chatting, there are many ways in which technology can facilitate the development and nurturing of familial bonds despite the hundreds or even thousands of miles that separate individuals from their elderly loved ones. Below are a few of the ways in which eldercare professionals encourage you to incorporate technology into your communication with your senior.
- Make sure your elderly loved one has access to a cell phone and enough minutes to speak to everyone they care about. Landlines are a bit outdated, and your senior can bring their cell phone with them while going to the grocery store or running other errands—which is prime time to catch up with loved ones if they are not driving. Just make certain that your senior knows how to use their cell phone and that their plan covers all of the capabilities they are looking for. For instance, a flip phone may be perfect for seniors who just want to talk; however, smartphones for tech-savvy seniors who enjoy using the data capabilities of these devices are wonderful options.
- Use Skype, FaceTime, and other video chatting software to connect with your senior on a visual level. Make sure that your loved one has a working Web cam, tablet, or smartphone that supports this activity. Set them up with an account on the program you have chosen and teach them how to use the software. This will allow face-to-face (in a virtual sense) communication, which is wonderful if you don’t get the chance to visit one another too often.
- Send email. The art of writing letters has not completely disappeared—it has simply evolved. Logging onto an email account and composing a message is quite simple, and you can easily help your senior to create their account and learn to navigate the website. This will allow you to hold onto the messages that your elderly loved one sends you for years to come.
Home care professionals at Always Best Care Chapel Hill-Durham understand that keeping up with a family member who lives far away is not always easy; however, with the help of technology you can see and speak with your loved one as much as you like!
This post was contributed by Todd Palmer, Owner of Always Best Care Chapel Hill – Durham. Todd writes about eldercare, home care, and senior-health related topics on his blog.