Managing Personal Safety for Seniors When Aging at Home

February 13, 2024
February 13, 2024

It’s no secret that most seniors want to age in place at home, but is that realistic given your loved one’s evolving care needs? Technology can help, especially when it comes to personal safety for seniors. As a caregiver, whether you have other responsibilities such as work or simply need to leave for appointments or run errands, being confident in your loved one’s safety and security when you aren’t with them is key. Here’s a look at different technology options to consider.

A closer look at personal safety for seniors

First, let’s discuss what personal safety for seniors really involves. In general, personal safety is about minimizing risks that can cause physical or psychological harm to a person. When it comes to seniors, that could include fall prevention, minimizing the risk of medication errors, fire prevention, emergency preparedness, and reducing the risk of falling victim to scams. In broader terms, personal safety for seniors could also include combatting loneliness, a sedentary lifestyle, and malnutrition, all of which can cause physical and psychological harm as well.

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Safety technology options for seniors and caregivers

At home, particularly when a senior with health, mobility, and/or transportation challenges lives primarily alone, it may seem like there’s an invisible barrier between them and the outside world. Technology can bridge that gap by giving caregivers and their loved ones the ability to connect to each other and the services needed outside the home to ensure personal safety for seniors. Some of the technology options include:

Activity-based sensors These can be placed around the home to detect any changes in your loved one’s activity levels, sleeping and eating patterns, and more. For example, if your loved one hasn’t come out of their bedroom by a certain time of the morning, has been in the bathroom for a longer than normal time, or hasn’t opened the refrigerator all day, you or another family member can be alerted by email, phone, or text. One company that offers these sensors is

A remote caregiving service If your loved one doesn’t need full-time support, this technology option can still keep you in the loop with real-time updates pushed to your smartphone. Many of these services, like Alexa Together, also offer 24/7 emergency help, remotely set reminders, and compatibility with fall detection devices.

Wearable health technologySmartwatches like the Apple Watch help with personal safety for seniors by helping to monitor activity levels, sleep, food, nutrition, weight and more. Some devices can even provide fall detection that automatically alerts first responders and emergency contacts if the wearer becomes immobile. Others also monitor heart rate, spot irregular heart rhythm, and access the amount of oxygen carried in the body. Of course, you can stay connected with your loved one through the watch as well!

And don’t forget the good old smartphone where your loved one can video chat with family and friends, play games, download books, order groceries, and manage medications – there’s an app for just about anything!

Personal safety for seniors beyond the home

While technology can help seniors age in place longer, if health conditions or cognitive challenges are worsening, it may be time for more than what caregivers can provide at home. Technology can help with personal safety for seniors but is not a substitute for the type of onsite care and 24/7 support provided by experienced care staff in a senior living community.

What’s more, senior living communities like ours also offer home maintenance, housekeeping, laundry, nutritious meals, transportation, a full calendar of social events, outings, enrichment opportunities, and plenty of upscale amenities to help your loved one thrive.

Even better, we are incorporating technology into everyday life for our residents and also offer a continuum of care on the same campus to support your loved one as their health needs evolve. But perhaps the greatest benefit is that senior living empowers caregivers with more free time to be in the moment with their loved one as a daughter, son, husband, or wife again.

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