Did you know medical alert systems are life-saving technologies that have helped countless seniors over recent decades?

In fact, they are so valuable that August has been designated national Medical Alert Awareness Month.

Alert systems can vary depending on a senior’s needs, but almost all of them require the user to wear a device. This can be a pendant, a lanyard, a bracelet, or even some smartphones, but all of them include an emergency call button. When the button is pressed, an alert signal is emitted and emergency assistance is contacted.

How can you tell if an aging parent or senior loved one can benefit from medical alert systems?

By paying attention to warning signs. Seniors with serious medical conditions such as heart disease, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes are all candidates for the safety net devices, as are seniors with similar ailments. Other telltale signs can include:

  • Frailty
  • Diminished mental alertness
  • Vision problems
  • Balance issues
  • A recent heart attack
  • Falling or a near-fall

It’s also a good idea to speak with an aging loved one’s doctor about his or her overall health condition. Make sure to ask about potential concerns and related precautions. Medical alert systems may be effective solutions that could even allow for increased independence.

The safety technologies are most effective when combined with other aspects of elder care, particularly those that aging adults struggle to maintain, such as home clutter and tripping hazards. Complementing safety measures might include a decluttering plan, regular eye exams, senior-friendly exercise such as tai chi or balance training, and proper footwear.

Seniors who take medications with certain side effects could also benefit from an emergency alert system. For instance, medicines causing drowsiness, dizziness or imbalance can contribute to falls, which often result in broken hips and head injuries. In these cases, every second counts, and an emergency alert would summon help immediately.

No matter how careful seniors and their adult children may be, accidents and emergencies are a part of life. While older adults face elevated risks, medical alert systems provide one of the best ways to be prepared. There is never a wrong time to plan forward and we encourage you to reach out to our law office and schedule a meeting to discuss your elder care concerns.