Tag Archives: seniors and small children

Gadgets that Golden Guys and Gals Should Use

It’s almost immediately assumed that people over the age of sixty (even younger if they didn’t work in a relatively high-technology industry) to be totally out of touch with the digital world and the various paradigms that define it. This would include the very devices that are part and parcel of this technological domain.

The assumption isn’t without merit; there are a lot of seniors who don’t keep up with the times, and thus, do not fully comprehend these newfangled gadgets and gizmos. Either they cannot be bothered to update themselves, none of the young ones have the patience to teach them, or a mixture of both reasons. In any case, this is a lost opportunity that must be rectified. Technology is meant to make things easier, more convenient, and more efficient for humanity, and that definitely includes our elders.

I will identify a few choice gadgets that golden boys and girls should seriously consider familiarizing themselves with. Granted, there will be some learning involved, but the benefits of being able to use these devices will improve the quality of life and give seniors something to talk about with their younger friends and family.

Tablet Computers

Mice and touchpads aren’t always the most intuitive interfaces for those who didn’t grow up with a personal computer readily available to them. Using one’s fingers to point and press, however, is something we are inherently comfortable with.


Google Nexus 7 Tablet

The touch-sensitive screens and the bright, crisp displays of today’s commercially available tablets make interfacing with information all the more easier. They aren’t particularly heavy (like some laptops), have very few actual buttons and moving parts, and the screen is big enough to be readable (compared to smartphones).

Game Consoles

I am not kidding. Many a senior will appreciate all the cool games one can play with a modern gaming console connected to an LCD TV. Remember that these computers are designed for a younger audience, and the controllers and other peripherals are simple and safe enough to fiddle around with or without the risk of electrocution.


Nintendo Wii Console

They’re a lot of fun, too. The selection of titles are rather diverse, and though Grandpa may not opt to relive his days of military service by playing some shooter, he and Grandma could always enjoy an entertaining game of virtual tennis. Obviously, this is another way for elders and youngins to play together.

Housekeeping Gadgets

There are numerous technological aids to home maintenance available nowadays. Most are designed to be simple to use and operate, while giving the owner more quality time to pursue what they truly want to do.

Admittedly, our seniors are a little less ambulatory than they used to be. Granted, they need healthy exercise more than ever, but under more controlled, safer environments and scenarios. Take for instance sweeping and vacuuming the house or apartment. It can be a bit risky for them to lift or push heavy furniture or try to get into cramped spaces. There are such handy cleaning robots that can do the work, albeit without risk to your beloved.

Mobile Phone

From a device used by the military and a key feature in expensive executive automobiles, wireless phones have become most ubiquitous consumer electronic device in the world today. It used to be just a way for people to get in touch via voice calls; now, just about all forms of data are transmitted and received through these handheld technological marvels.


Samsung Jitterbug

Cutting-edge smartphones have so many features and functionalities, but not all of these are essential. A simple and reliable mobile phone is all one needs to negotiate the intricacies of the wired world.

A final word on teaching seniors about new technology: be patient. The world is changing much faster than it was during the years of their youth, and it can be disconcerting for some of them. Give them the time and positive encouragement to learn how to use these gadgets and gizmos properly, and you would have made their lives a tad more convenient and enjoyable.

About the Author

Stacey Thompson is a professional writer, marketer, entrepreneur, and a lover of weird little animals. She is based in San Diego, California, and is currently conspiring with her closest friends in making their new blog, Word Baristas.

Wheelchair Safety and Your Sanity: Adjusting You and Your Small Children to a Live-In Grandparent

Ken Stanfield is a passionate blogger who spends his time researching and writing about health care, geriatric healthcare needs, and humanitarianism. He writes for the medical walkers supplier justwalkers.com

The day has come for you to tell the kids that Grandma or Grandpa is coming for an extended visitin fact, they’re staying indefinitely. Having an aging parent move in with you and your family, especially amidst the chaos of small children, can be a major adjustment for everyone as the household dynamics shift to accommodate another person in your home. Facing such a change and all the stresses it brings can seem like an overwhelming challenge, but there are things you can do to help make the adjustment smoother and less stressful for everyone involved.

Before They Come
Clear the air of all unresolved problems and resentment between you and your aging parent. Allowing such tension to remain will create a negative environment, and close proximity will hurt rather than help your family relationships. Children often pick up on their parents’ stress, and if you are stressed, chances are that your children will be more anxious and fretful as well.

Prepare your child beforehand for the changes that will be made. Explain to them that some things in their lives will be very different now; for example, the children may have new responsibilities to help around the house because of the extra tasks you will be attending to. Be sure to emphasize the positive aspect of this change in their livesthe opportunity to come together as a family and spend more time with Grandma or Grandpaand reassure them that you will still have time for them and that everything will be okay.

After Arrival
Establish a routine. Having a schedule can help everyone feel a little more secure and less stressed; routine is important for young and old alike. Allow yourself a little bit of time to figure out what works best for you and your family.

Explain the what and why of medical equipment. The presence of strange metal and plastic devices (walkers, nebulizers, oxygen tanks, etc.) can intimidate children or make them curious, resulting in them touching things they shouldn’t. Explain gently what each thing is and what it is for, and tell the child what boundaries there are concerning it. For example: This little plastic box is Grandpa’s nebulizer. He uses it to help him breathe better. Don’t touch it, please, or it might not work when Grandpa needs it to. In addition, be sure to address safety concerns with such equipment as they come up for both kids and grandparents. For instance, don’t let children play on electric wheelchairs or stand on the battery box, and avoid taking electric wheelchairs out in the rain. Keep very small children or babies away from medical equipment and gate doorways and take other precautions as necessary.

Give your parent a private space where they can have jurisdiction. Your aging parent most likely feels an increasing loss of control over his or her life, and thus it is important to help maintain independence as much as possible and allow them some space of their own, free from the disorder that young children often leave in their wake. Make sure your children know that this room is their grandparent’s room, and they must ask permission before entering it.

Encourage one-on-one time between your child and your parent. Give them simple activities to do together, and ask your parent to tell your child stories about when he or she was young. This is a great way to encourage bonding and keep some of your family stories alive. Who knowsyou may learn something you hadn’t known about your parent before. Also, giving your child opportunities to help your loved one can help them bond with their grandparent and make them feel important and useful.
Look for things to be grateful for, and find simple ways to create memories.

Create an environment of open communication and respect. Communication is key in this situation, as it is with all relationships. Make it safe for both your children and your aging parent to approach you about concerns. Model respectful behavior toward your parent for your child. An open communication platform in a loving environment will make the whole atmosphere of the home better for everyone.

Be sure to take some time for yourself. It sounds cliché, but that’s because it’s true: the importance of adequate sleep and regular exercise cannot be overstated. Consider them an investment rather than a wastetaking that time for yourself will make you better able to fulfill your responsibilities and will make you much more pleasant to be around.