Grandparents Go High Tech
For Americans of every age, the internet has become woven into our daily lives. Whether you are taking classes online, banking online, shopping from the comfort of your own home or booking your next vacation, access to the internet is more important than ever.
And despite the stereotypes, seniors and technology get along surprisingly well for the most part. Six in ten older adults use the internet and of those, 71% surf the web daily. As baby boomers continue to retire in large numbers, the numbers are sure to increase.
When you are looking for a senior living community, be sure to consider those that offer a welcoming technological environment with all of the necessary services already installed, maintained and easily accessible. These amenities allow residents to simply use their devices on the internet while the senior living community takes care of “tech support.”
How Seniors Use New Technology
The older adults who are adapting to new technology are using it differently than younger demographics. While Twitter and Instagram are more popular among millennials, nearly a third of all older adults use Facebook.
Older adults are also accessing the internet differently. Although over half of the population has a smartphone, they aren’t very popular among seniors. Instead, tablets and e-readers like iPads and Kindles are more common. Tablets like iPads are an attractive option for older adults interested in video chatting with friends and family because everything is centralized on one handheld device that functions similar to a phone.
The ability to connect and communicate over Facebook, iPads and via other technology is proving beneficial for seniors too. Research suggests that internet usage can actually reduce the probability of depression in older adults by 30%.
New Technology Adapts to Seniors
Technology is increasingly adapting to the needs of older adults and senior living communities now offer state-of-the-art systems for computer-savvy seniors. After all, those leaving the workforce today have become accustomed to and very adept at building their careers and their personal lives around computers. Seniors want services available that will allow them to maintain independence.
These days, tech companies aren’t appealing to older adults with introductions and tutorials as much, but are now designing apps, devices and interfaces to specifically meet the needs of older adults.
Helping Seniors Adapt to New Technology
Over three-quarters of older adults say they would need assistance learning a new device and over half would need assistance learning a new social networking site. Whether it’s a simple fix or a larger problem, having someone available to address tech hiccups can be a wonderful resource.
For older adults living in senior living communities, staff is often available to provide basic technical support. Some senior living communities, like Melrose Meadows, also host classes to help educate those who want to learn more.
Are you or a loved one exploring senior and assisted living communities? Melrose Meadows is a certified assisted and independent living community in Iowa City, Iowa. We provide an independent, secure lifestyle for our residents in a vibrant, all-inclusive setting. Schedule a tour today to see if Melrose Meadows is a good fit for your future.