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16 Creative Ways Smart Devices Can Help the Elderly

Last Updated Jan 3, 2022
smart home devices for elderly seniors

Taking care of our elderly is important to all of us, but sometimes life gets in the way and it makes it difficult to keep up. Thankfully, there are smart devices that can make everyone’s lives a lot easier. We can’t always be near our aging family members because of our hectic work schedules or maybe we just don’t live close by.

This is where smart technology really comes in handy.

What is a Smart Device?

A smart device is a device that brings automation into the equation to make your life easier. It can learn things, remember patterns, do things automatically to save you time and energy.

An example of this is a smart voice assistant like the popular Amazon Echo. You can ask it what the weather is, play music, and more.

But how do smart devices help us take care of seniors? I’m glad you asked.

How Smart Devices Can Help Seniors

Smart devices can bring peace of mind and convenience when it comes to taking care of our seniors. There are indoor security cameras we can install so we can check up on them when we are at work or on vacation. There are features that allow us to even communicate through the cameras to them to ask if they are doing okay or if they assistance.

That is just the tip of the iceberg. There is so many other pieces of technology that have really come a long way to help us make our lives better.

Smart devices can make your lives easier by keeping track of our family inside their homes when we’re far away they can also help us by letting us know their location like using smartwatches to keep track of their blood pressure and heart rate.

Help your grandma or grandpa out by automating their lives with smart devices. You’ll allow them to live more freely and independently. They’ll feel better about being able to do things on their own more frequently and you’ll get the peace of mind on their safety.

Use a Wireless Caregiver Pager Call

A Wireless Pager Call is fantastic for seniors to alert people when they need help. If they can’t speak very loudly then they can rely on pressing the button to sound an alarm so you or the caregiver can be alerted.

It’s common for good quality callers to be water proof and come with things like a neck strap too so they can wear it or if you want to hang it somewhere.

Many wireless pager callers have a wide range too usually operating in at least a 600+ feet of open area.

Utilize Amazon Spot or Amazon Show to Call or Video Call Seniors

Another great smart device for the elderly is the Amazon Spot or the Amazon Show. These are awesome because you can video call or phone call other Amazon devices. Amazon has a ‘drop’ feature so that you can drop in and call without them answering the phone or video call. That way you can check in to see where they are and comes in handy in case they can’t answer it manually. This is excellent for situations to check in on them where perhaps they may have fallen and can’t get to the device.

Amazon Spot and Show are also great for other features like listening to music setting alarms and watching videos. They can also play audiobooks, check traffic, and answer other general questions. They still come with all the great features that Amazon Alexa devices come with.

Note this feature only works if you have Amazon devices like the Spot or Show.

Set Smart Bulbs on a Schedule

There are so many lights in a home, it can be a nuisance to have to turn them all off. An even more annoying thing to worry about is forgetting about certain lights being on and wasting electricity.

Set your smart bulbs on a schedule so all the lights turn on and off everyday. This takes a lot of the guess work and can even prevent falls.

One of the main reasons that older folks fall is because its too dark. Make sure that the lights are on by setting a schedule so its one less thing to worry about.

Note: This may require an IFTTT so it will take some tinkering but it’s highly worth it.

Use Enabled GPS Smart Watches and Track Your Senior

Getting your grandma or Grandpa wearable or Smartwatch is a good idea because it can keep you informed of their GPS location. This is good in case you ever need to track them down.

Many elderly who have memory loss can have issues especially if they like to go on walks around the neighborhood or at a nearby park. If they wander off somewhere and get lost, you’ll really want them to be wearing some sort of GPS tracking device like a smart watch.

Another helpful feature of most smartwatches can track your steps, heart rate or even blood pressure. While these aren’t the most reliable, it’s still a good benchmark to measure by.

A cheap alternative is to grab a “Kids Smart Watch” which has a lot of the same features you would want to keep track of seniors. Real-time location finder, GPS tracking, Voice Chat, Flashlights and alarms.

Automate Cleaning Chores with Smart Devices to Save Seniors Energy

There are a lot of smart devices on the market that can help you clean your home. This is also great for the elderly because you don’t want them moving around doing everyday chores. There are things like robot vacuums and robot mops to automate their lives and save them time and energy.

Maybe your grandfather has a bad hip and its not good for him to do things like pushing a heavy vacuum around the house. A roomba or other smart vacuums would be great in this scenario.

Maybe your grandmother is frail and she loves to keep her floors clean by mopping. A robot mop would be a great present for her to keep her away from the mop.

Technology has really come a long way and its amazing what it can help us do.

Get a Video Doorbell to Answer the Door and See Who Visited

Imagine if it hurts for your senior to get up and answer the door 5x a day. It would be great if you could answer the door with a smart video doorbell like the Ring 2. This way you can tell them to leave the package, or politely decline a door salesman.

You can even hook up Ring to your other smart devices for them so they could see whose at the door with their Amazon Show or Smart TVs. That way they don’t have to be getting up and moving to answer the door all the tim.

Use Smart Plugs on Appliances So You Can Turn Them Off

Another cool thing to look into is smart plugs that can hook up to appliances and make sure they are off.

Examples include curling irons/flat iron/regular irons, toasters, slow cookers, and any other appliances. Perhaps, your senior tends to forget about the crockpot and you want to make sure it’s off.

That could be dangerous to them if they forgot and left it on all night.

Install a Smart Doorlock Just In Case You Lose The Key

Imagine losing the key to your grandparents house and you need to get in immediately. Or maybe they lost their key and can’t get into their home.

Smart Locks have become really popular and provide a great sense of security and even work with other smart devices like Alexa.

You can use your smartphone to lock or unlock your door from your couch or while on vacation. This can really come in handy and is worth the investment.

They are relatively simple to install and don’t take more than 10 minutes. You can keep track and monitor who comes through the door and even see time stamps. A neat feature for some smart locks is they even automatically lock after the door is closed. No worries for forgetting to lock the door when they leave or come home.

Order Groceries Online

Amazon Fresh and Prime Now are just a few examples of another great way that technology can help seniors stay home. That they can automate ordering groceries or other household products like detergent online by using Amazons Dash. Getting their groceries delivered is perfect so that they don’t have to go out and drive especially if they’re at a point where I’m driving a car is that recommended or safe for them at their age.

Just to break these 2 grocery services down:

  • Prime Now is a service that is free to all Amazon Prime members with free delivery within 2 hours. You can order a variety of things like household products, pet supplies, electronics, toys, and even groceries! Since they acquired Whole Foods, their groceries are included too.
  • Amazon Fresh is similar but it is an add-on service for $15/month. It is specifically focused on groceries and have reusable tote bags that provide more freshness.

Note: They have recently announced that these will be merged by the end of the year by Yahoo reports, so this all may change to just Prime Now by 2020.

Use an Automatic Pill Dispenser to Manage Medication

With older age usually means that your body starts to break down. More hospital visits and more medication to take.

Older people love taking medication right? And they always remember how many pills to take and at what time? Just kidding… This can be increasingly difficult for those with bad memory too.

I suggest looking into an automatic pill dispenser. It stores your medication pills for up to 28+ days and sounds an alarm when it’s time to take them. Then it dispenses the correct amount of medication at the set time. It is locked and portioned out so only the right amount of medication is administered at the set time. There is even up to 6 different alarms you can set during the day.

This is great for caregivers that can’t always be around to remind people when to take their medication or how many to take.

Get an Automatic Pet Feeder

It’s very normal for people to have pets, they are great companions to have around and they love us unconditionally. Seniors having pets at home to keep them company is awesome too. I know I will probably have a dog in my golden years to keep me company or else I’ll probably go crazy.

A great device to get for a man’s best friend or a cat is an automatic feeder so that they don’t have to worry about carrying or reloading their food bowl 3-4 times a day. You simply load up the food every few days and set the schedule. You pick exactly what time and day and how many times to feed your pet. Set it to feed your pet at 8AM, Noon, 5PM and 8PM. Everyday. Boom, Done. Pretty convenient right?

You can even set some pet feeders to skip certain days or record a message to play when it’s time to eat.

Install an Indoor Camera to Monitor and Talk to Seniors

Do you ever just wanna drop in to check in on how your grampa is doing but you don’t want to disturb him? or maybe you’re tied up at work and can’t make a call. Wouldn’t it be nice to check on a live feed of his living room really quick?

Getting an indoor camera is one of the top priorities I would consider when wanting to keep an eye on seniors. Most smart indoor cameras alert you when there is motion and even allow you to communicate with them through the camera and your phone like a phone call. Wouldn’t it be great just to pop in and see how everythings going? Or to see if they’re doing okay and making sure nothing bad has happened.

You can even setup certain indoor cameras like the Nest to alert your smart bulbs to flash certain (red) colors in case of an emergency. Nest even has 24/7 live streaming so you can check on them any time of day and give you peace of mind.

Get a Smart Thermostat

It’s a pain to change the temperature a lot during the day. I know that my household changes it at least 2x a day and it drives us crazy.

Getting a smart thermostat can give you a sense of relief knowing that you can check your phone anytime to see what the temperture is at. You can adjust it for them or set schedules to save you time and money. If it gets too cold during the winter, you can turn up the heat to make sure they’re warm and toasty.

Thermostats like Nest’s newest 3rd generation have big bright displays that you can see from far away. This is great because it can show you what time it is, what the weather is, and of course the temperture.

Hire a Robot Lawnmower

This sounds like a joke right? Yeah, I thought so too, but it’s not.

I’m just going to say it though, I hate cutting grass. It does however, bring me a sense of joy and accomplishment after a good 1-3 hours of lawn maintenance.

Mowing the lawn can be a pain for just about anyone though, but what if you could buy a robot to do it for you?

There are some pretty nifty robot lawn mowers on the market that can mow the lawn for you every day and even charge itself. It is extremely low maintenance and a really great time and energy saver.

Keep your grandmothers lawn cut and away from the lawnmower. This is one of my favorite things on this list and if you can afford it, I would highly recommend it.

The only major downside is the big price tag on these bad boys. They are not cheap, but think about all the time and money you would save in a year. If you paid $40/week to get your grass cut or spend 2 hours/week on your grass, that’s 104 hours or over $2000 you’re saving a year.

The setup process does take some time because you have to lay down some wires and set boundaries for it to keep within your yard. I will say though that once you do have it set up and configured, it’s very little maintenance and is easy to get this going and on the grass. Set it and forget it.

Get Multiple Voice Assistants Around The Home

Imagine if your grandfather fell and can’t get to his phone. He is too weak to get to it and there is no one around.

If you have a voice assistant nearby like an Amazon Echo or a Google Assistant, they can ask Google or Alexa to call you or 911 in case they have fallen. They can call a nearby neighbor or someone else to help. Sometimes they forget to wear their emergency wearable pendents or it’s not charged.

These can come in handy in emergencies and may be worth the $20-40 bucks to have a few laying around in places they frequent like the living room or their bedroom.

Install a Smart Water Sensor To Monitor For Leaks

Water leaks can be one of the forgotten risks that can occur in homes. Get alerts directly to your phone in case there is a water leak at an elderlys home. You can have notifications when there are first signs of excess water or moisture to prevent future water leaks.

Smart water sensors can hook up to your Smart Things Hub or other smart hubs. Water flooding can be one of the most expensive damages that most homeowners are unprepared for. These are very inexpensive and worth the investment.

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