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 From the Desk of Dawn Neglia

Social Worker- Office on Aging, x 7212 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

The APPS have it!! – Part 2

Last month we began reviewing different types of technology and apps for phones that may assist seniors with maintaining independence. We continue this month with highlighting some options. This article is not an endorsement or advertisement for any specific brand.

Personal Emergency Response systems are a great option for people who live alone. These devices work with the press of a button to alert emergency responders that you are in distress or have fallen. Many like GreatCall and MobileHelp work both in and outside of the home and offer fall detection in cases where a person cannot push the button. For people who would prefer an app and not a device, IPhone and Android offer “Red Panic Button” which sends messages to a pre-designated list when you press the app.

As a caregiver, you may have concerns with a loved one who has mild dementia but continues to drive, or you may be someone who drives but finds new destinations more challenging. Verizon offers the Hum device that is not only diagnostic, but tracks where a vehicle has been and sends this information to an app for a loved one to monitor. The app is user friendly and the package comes at a low cost. How many of us put our keys down and cannot locate them in our purse or home? The TilePro is a device that attaches to your keyring and uses a Bluetooth tracker to set off an alarm when you need help with finding them around the house.

In addition to devices and applications to increase independence and safety, I encourage all seniors who live alone to consider the Blue Angel Program offered by our police department. This program helps the police and emergency responders with entering your home via a special lockbox device that hold your house key. This can minimize a delay in reaching you and prevents damage to the door/home when forced entry would be used if you cannot reach the door to allow responders into the home. The township also offers a Special Needs Registry where you can ensure the safety of a loved one who may have cognitive impairment, such as dementia. These are free programs and I am happy to assist anyone who may need an application.

The APPS have it!!

According the Consumer Technology Associations, the aging technology market “is expected to grow to nearly $30 billion in the next few years”. This means there may be an app or device to assist almost everyone! Many people are familiar with technology devices like Alexa and Google Home, as they offer many different models that can set reminders, answer questions, make lists and even video chat from the comfort of your home. For those who do not drive, Lyft and Uber have user- friendly apps for IPhone and Androids. Video doorbell systems like Ring have become popular and allow people to view who is at the door before opening it to a potential dangerous visitor. However, there are other types of technology and phone apps marketed specifically for seniors to help with life and safety. My articles for March and April will focus on these options.

         Vision and hearing impairment affect many seniors and at times, eyeglasses and hearing aides are not enough. The IPhone offers a free app called “Be My Eyes” that can help magnify and illuminate text on documents and menus when you find yourself struggling with fine print. Vendors MaxiAid and Independent Living offer products such as scales, thermometers, blood pressure monitors, glucose monitors and even pill bottles that will dictate the text aloud. For those with hearing difficulties, there are devices like TV Ears, which assists with volume control for television and allows the user to adjust the volume on their personal device, without affecting fellow viewers. Caption phones such as ClearCaptions, can display text to make conversations less frustrating and better yet, can be provided at no cost!

         When you are managing multiple medications, it can often be difficult to recall what time each pill is due for administration and sometimes it is just impossible to open the bottle! IPhone offers an app called Pillboxie that can have reminders sent to your device that help track your pill times. There are also devices like the TabSafe Medication dispenser that can set reminders, administer and alarm to help with medication compliance, when an app is not enough.

This article only highlights a few options and is not intended as an advertisement or an endorsement of any particular brand, but presents ideas for further research. If you are interested in learning more, please stop by the office at any time.

    Part 2 of this article will be featured in the April Beacon.

 

   Living Legacies 2020

Looking for Participants

High School students will interview you to discuss your family’s cultural traditions and how you keep your traditions alive in today’s ever changing world.

Call the Office to register or with questions.

Please be part of this fabulous Intergenerational Program

 

Join A Group...


What's
 on Your Mind 

"What's On Your Mind" meets on Fridays at 1:45 p.m. to discuss current events and information that interests you. We welcome new members.  You can drop in anytime.  Call Dawn for more information. 


Monthly Bereavement Support Group
Ongoing support group. Participants offer mutual support to each other as we share our struggles and grief in a safe non-judgmental venue.

Book Club
A weekly group using literature as a conduit for discussion. Participants share thoughts and feelings about what they have read and relate it ‘if applicable’ to their life experience. We meet every Thursday (except the first Thursday of the month) at 10:30 am. Please call Caryl for more information.

VISION LOSS SUPPORT GROUP
Meets the first Friday of every month at 10:30 a.m. in the conference room.  This is an opportunity to meet new people, share information and benefit from mutual support. 

Veterans 

Veterans of any age meet monthly to share stories and strive to re-create the camaraderie that is experienced when sharing a common bond. This group meets monthly on the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 10:30 a.m.

Social Work Services
As more individuals are choosing to ‘age in place’, the senior center offers ‘home visits’ by the Social Worker to the homebound elderly. We provide limited case management services, emotional support and counseling for issues including loss, caregiver's stress, reduced independence, relationship issues,  depression, substance abuse, isolation and more.  The Social Worker also sees individuals and couples on site. Please contact Dawn Neglia for further information. 

Notary

 If you need something to be notarized, please call first to schedule an appointment. Notary services are complimentary.

Office on Aging
Caryl Greenberg

cgreenbe@sbtnj.net
Director
Senior Center
540 Ridge Road
Monmouth Junction, NJ 08852
732-329-4000 x7670
or
732-438-0918
(rotary phones)
Transportation
732-329-4000 x7363
Center Hours
Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Sundays
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.