Older Adults and the Need for Smart Homes
Due to the advancements in smart home technology, everyone stands to benefit from installing smart devices in their households. Smart assistants remind us of important events and inform us of upcoming weather, while smart light bulbs and thermostats keep the home environment just right while helping us save on heating and electricity bills.
Yet, while smart home technology makes life easier for all age groups, one cohort, in particular, stands to benefit the most from the installation of smart home devices: older adults. As we age, tasks that were once simple, like turning off the lights before leaving the house, or remembering to take our medication in the morning, come with added difficulty. What’s more, once our children grow up, leave the house and relocate to different areas, the burden of household chores and maintenance becomes greater. For the elderly, the need for devices that render daily life more convenient grows with age.
Smart devices help in all of the areas that older adults need the most help with. Smart pillboxes alert us when it’s time to take our medication, and even send a notification to a nearby family member if we miss a dose. Sophisticated health-monitoring devices keep tabs on our blood pressure, and other vital signs, letting us know if something is unusual. In times of panic, an emergency call button fixed on the wall—or worn on the person—can be a lifesaver for an older adult.
Though not directly related to health and emergency, around-the-house devices like smart lights and smart assistants just make life easier for older adults: maintaining an ideal environment without the need to flip a switch or adjust a knob. While some might be intimidated by the installation process for such devices, in most cases it’s simple and intuitive, requiring an hour or two of help from a friend or family member, at most. The conclusion is clear: older adults can benefit greatly from smart home technology.