Digital technology has transformed the way people communicate, get news, shop and stay connected. Smartphone apps help older adults remain engaged in both online and offline content and activities. For many seniors, the world of apps is entirely new, and it isn’t always easy to embrace something new.
Isaiah 43:19 says “Behold, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”
At Bethesda Gardens, we are committed to supporting a community of continued learning for our seniors. It’s always exciting to learn and participate in new things, and getting to know some convenient technology may be a great step for you today. Here are eight apps you might want to check out.
Turn your smartphone into a perfect digital magnifier. The EyeReader app helps with reading small print, whether it's a restaurant menu, a prescription bottle or a beloved family Bible. The digital zoom is easy to use and has flashlight options if you need more lighting.
Some health conditions require you to take multiple medications at several intervals throughout the day. It can be difficult to remember which medication to take, what dose to take and what time to take it. Created by a registered nurse, Pillboxie helps seniors better adhere to treatment regimens by offering an easier, more visual way to remember medications.
3. Dragon Dictation
One thing that separates many seniors from younger adults is the ability to type fast on a smartphone. Younger people are accustomed to typing very quickly with their thumbs, but that can be a difficult skill to master — particularly on a tiny smartphone keyboard. Dragon Dictation is an app that automatically generates a note, text or email in real time as you speak into your phone, making it easier to keep up with the grandkids.
This app lets you create digital bookshelves for books you’ve read, books you're currently reading and books you want to read. You can rate and review books and participate in discussions with fellow Goodreads users. But the best part is that you can see what your friends are reading, so you're always in the loop.
The Pandora Radio app is like having your own personalized radio station with you at all times. It's completely customizable to your tastes, so you can listen to the music you love. Pandora stations are organized by genre, which means you can browse hundreds of stations, including Christian and gospel, that suit any style or mood. Simply type the name of an artist, song or genre, and then sit back and enjoy.
You know that staying mentally and physically active is one key to a healthy lifestyle. Lumosity is an app that offers an assortment of mind training games and brain teasers designed to boost critical thinking, memory and problem-solving skills. Improve memory recall and information retention and challenge your cognitive abilities while learning how your mind works.
Adults aged 65 and older are Facebook's fastest-growing demographic, and with good reason. Facebook's simple design and easy-to-use functions help older adults stay connected with family and friends. It’s also great for making new connections with like-minded people. Bethesda Gardens in Frisco, Texas, even has its own Facebook page where residents can view photos of residential life and stay informed about community activities and events.
Families and friends are often spread out across the state, country or even world. While talking on the phone is great, nothing beats face-to-face conversation. Skype lets you make free video and voice calls, domestically and internationally. Tell your grandchildren a bedtime story, or chat and share photos with loved ones.