Top Safety Apps for Seniors: Technology for Security and Independence

As we age, the desire to maintain independence for as long as possible is universally shared. This desire reflects our instinctual, human need for personal autonomy as well as the need to maintain our sense of self and stay connected to one’s community and social network.

In many cases, a move to an assisted living community or memory care community is the best option for keeping our loved ones safe, but for those who may not be ready, technology can help keep seniors safer at home!

Safety apps play a critical role in enabling this option by helping older adults navigate their daily routines safely and confidently. Acting as a virtual assistant of sorts, innovative, new apps add a layer of support when health care professionals, family members and caregivers are not around.

How Apps Keep Seniors Safe

There are hundreds of mobile applications, or “apps,” designed to keep seniors safe. Whether it’s monitoring health vitals, keeping track of one’s location, or simply remembering and managing medications, safety apps have become indispensable tools. Until the time is right to move to an assisted living community like Sonata, these practical tools provide reassurance and peace of mind, not only to the seniors who use them, but to the family members and caregivers who worry about their safety.

In the ever-evolving landscape of technology, there is no limit to the apps that cater to the needs and safety of aging seniors. Of the hundreds of apps you can currently add to your phone, there are at least eight innovative ways they work to keep seniors safe:

  • Medication reminders/medication tracking
  • GPS location sharing/location tracking
  • Medical alerts/emergency assistance
  • Fall detection
  • Safety check-ins
  • Medical appointment scheduling and telehealth
  • Health management
  • Fraud protection

Lively Link Healthy Monitoring

Among the many apps available for mobile devices, we have selected a few known for making life safer for older adults who may need a little extra support but want to maintain an independent lifestyle.

Formerly known as GreatCall Link, Lively is a robust and diverse platform for those who wish to monitor the health and safety of an elderly loved one. Through a subscription to a Lively Health and Safety Plan, the app pairs with senior-friendly devices like the Jitterbug Smart, Jitterbug Flip, and Lively Wearable devices as well as virtual assistants like Alexa and Apple Watches, offering updates on daily activities, health status, and GPS location. Additionally, it sends automatic notifications if unusual movement patterns are detected, keeping caregivers and emergency services informed about potential emergencies.

Life360 GPS Location Sharing

Life360 is a leading location safety, messaging tool, and communication app. With features like “Place Alert,” it offers GPS location sharing and tracking for families and people of all ages. Loved ones can access real-time GPS tracking, set up geofenced areas for notifications when a family member exits a designated safe zone, and receive alerts about accidents and falls. It also offers features uniquely designed to keep seniors safe, including emergency dispatch services, medical assistance, and digital safety from identity theft. This feature is especially helpful to those families who worry about a loved with Alzheimer’s disease wandering away from the home or becoming lost.

Learn how Life360 keeps track of elderly loved ones from afar.

Medisafe Medication Reminder

One crucial aspect of senior safety is medication management. Older adults with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia symptoms may forget to take medications and apps are a helpful way to deliver essential reminders. A leading medication engagement platform and app, Medisafe signals reminders of when to take medications and pills, track medication intake, and send updates to caregivers, ensuring medication compliance. Along with AI-driven features, its intuitive interface provides an effortless user experience that caters to older adults who may be unfamiliar with or struggle to use technology.

FallCall Solutions Incident Detection Apps

Because falls in the home tend to be one of the most serious risk factors for older adults living alone, dozens of fall assistance apps have come to market in recent years. According to Wired Magazine, Apple Watch and Garmin Fitness trackers even have fall and incident detection features built into the device.

FallCall Solutions is an app designed to detect falls via the Apple Watch’s sensor. When a fall is detected, the proprietary technology called FallCall Detect® sends notifications to caregivers or predefined emergency contacts.

Philips CarePoint Telehealth App

Philips CarePoint Resident Safety System is a telehealth app that enhances senior safety by providing access to medical professional through a wearable device. It offers emergency call systems, automatic fall detection, wander management, and much more, through a single, integrated system, providing crucial information to caregivers.

With the press of a button, medical alert apps like CarePoint will typically connect to emergency services or a trained operator when there is a health emergency. Some medical alert apps are stand-alone while others work by pairing with a pendant, necklace, bracelet or watch for the ultimate in both safety and convenience.

Snug Safety Daily Check-in App

While the more robust platforms like Philips Carepoint and Life360 are useful, they also come at a cost. A free solution called Snug Safety was created to help seniors living alone feel safer through daily checks. The app works by sending texts asking if the user is okay. In case there’s no response, the app will notify a designated emergency contact, potentially warding off emergencies before they escalate.

With so many safety monitoring apps on the market today, it helps to have guidance from the experts. The National Council on Aging recommends these five monitoring systems for older adults.

The Red Panic Button Emergency Alert App

The beauty of the Red Panic Button app is in its simplicity. With a single press of the literal “big red button” that appears on mobile devices, this app will send text messages and emails with exact GPS coordinates embedded in a Google Maps link to a list of designated emergency contacts. Ideal for children and seniors who may not be technically saavy, the Red Panic Button offers the most user-friendly interface and intuitive functionality among all safety apps.

Birdsong Tablet For Enhanced Connection

Some older adults struggle to integrate technology into their lives. Birdsong Tablet makes it easy for seniors to use technology, including apps. Birdsong offers a full suite of tools aimed at improving the quality of senior living through various activities and communication tools while still ranking high on safety. It features video chatting for enhanced communications with family and loved ones, cognition-enhancing brain games, and multiple learning tools. With a focus on digital engagement, the app incorporates safety by keeping the aging mind active, thereby reducing isolation and increasing overall health and senior wellness.

Assisted Living Community: The Safest Solution For Aging In Place

As we age, living alone creates challenges that apps alone cannot solve. Although technology offers valuable assistance and support, there will come a time when alternate living arrangements, professional care, and support will become necessary to maintain safety.

Assisted living communities fill this need, offering round-the-clock care, immediate medical assistance, and an active social environment. From assistance with personal care to preparing meals designed for senior nutrition, long-term care communities with multiple senior lifestyle options provide an all-encompassing safety net to seniors. Furthermore, with built-in  monitored emergency systems in place, seniors are always a button-press away from assistance.

Though technology undoubtedly plays a pivotal role in the safety and well-being of seniors living alone, the value of human companionship and care should not be understated. Assisted living communities not only ensure their safety but also ensure healthy aging, mental health and social wellness through activities, events, and life enrichment programming, ultimately reducing the risk of loneliness and depression.

To learn more about keeping seniors safe at Serenades and Sonata communities, schedule a visit to a community near you.

Expect More At Sonata

Visit a Sonata community and find out why putting service first has allowed us to continually raise the bar in senior living and exceed our residents’ expectations.