Some of our ageing loved ones may choose to remain in their homes upon retirement rather than move to alternative living arrangements.
Seniors could choose to remain at home because they prefer to stay in more familiar surroundings and the company of family and friends or for the reason that they want to be independent.
Whatever their motives may be for this choice of living in their homes, certain measures have to be taken by caregivers to ensure older adults’ security and well-being. These older adults need the best medical alert systems to keep them safe.
Living alone presents a number of dangers to older persons. Our loved ones may slip and fall, causing them significant pain and harm. It is essential that they get quick access to medical care in these circumstances.
Medical Alert Systems (MAS) are designed to detect when older persons are in danger and send them help immediately. Click here to see Seasons Retirement’s detailed information on how to select an appropriate MAS for your loved ones.
How Medical Alert Systems (MAS) work
Also known as Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS), Medical Alert Systems are communication devices and arrangements designed to bring quick aid to older persons in danger. These systems can be designed either for in-home or mobile use. So, how do medical alert systems work?
The in-home variant generally consists of a pendant and console equipped with a “help button.” Once this button is pressed or triggered in an emergency, signals are sent through the MAS base unit, often connected to a telephone jack or wall outlet.
These signals are relayed to a professional operator who would talk to you and find out about the emergency in a few seconds. Upon determining the nature of the problem, this operator sends emergency services or a caregiver to your home, as the situation demands.
That said, there may be some cases where older adults are unable to speak after falling. MAS equipped with gyroscopes, accelerometers, and specially designed algorithms is used in such situations. Once a fall is registered on the system, an alarm is automatically sent to an operator, and help is quickly arranged.
Mobile MAS is used for older adults who engage in a more active outdoor lifestyle. This type of MAS is mainly designed to track the locations of older adults to ensure they remain within safe environments. They make use of the Global Positioning System (GPS) and cellular network for this.
Who should have MAS?
Older adults with certain health conditions like memory impairment – dementia and Alzheimer’s – who often wander off and get lost; people who experience dizziness and have poor hearing or eyesight are particularly vulnerable to slips and falls. Caregivers should therefore endeavour to protect them with the best medical alert systems.
While most of these systems are primarily designed for older persons, people of all ages with some of the aforementioned health challenges may also benefit from using MAS.
Benefits of MAS
Is life alert worth it? What benefits does MAS offer to older persons? Some of them are:
1. Rapid assistance
Getting timely help for older adults when there is an emergency is very crucial. Seniors can get seriously injured from falls and require emergency medical attention. MAS ensures that they get this timely attention by detecting falls as soon as they happen before proceeding to contact emergency services.
2. Guarantees independence
MAS allows older persons who prefer to remain independent and live in their own homes to do so safely. With MAS, the need for frequent checkups by caregivers and family members is reduced.
Furthermore, older persons can carry out outdoor activities, hobbies, and exercises without fear that their MAS will get damaged since they are designed to be water-proof and shatter-proof.
3. Easy to wear
MAS can come in the form of light bracelets, bangles, or small pendants to be worn in necklaces. These accessories can easily blend in with clothing and be worn around the house and outdoors. Their water-proof nature means that they can be worn even in the shower. They are discreet, non-cumbersome, and yet highly effective.
4. Non-electrically powered
Some of the best medical alert systems are powered by long-lasting batteries rather than electricity. This ensures that older adults remain protected even when there is a disruption in the electricity supply.
5. Assistance assured everywhere
No matter where our older loved ones may be, MAS can track their location via GPS and send help to the exact place where they are.
6. Rest of mind
Many family members of older persons living alone constantly worry over their health, safety, and well-being.
Hence, with the protection that MAS provides, relatives can sleep easier and avoid interfering in the lives of their older relatives to allow them a greater degree of independence.
7. Protection from diverse forms of danger
Apart from emergencies related to slips and falls, some MAS are also equipped to detect smoke, dangerous carbon monoxide emissions, fire, and other potentially harmful situations.
Expert emergency service workers such as firefighters may be sent to the homes of older adults as soon as these dangers are detected.
8. Applicable to all lifestyles
MAS comes in different types. For example, if your older loved one is the active, outgoing type, you can get them a mobile MAS.
The in-home MAS is recommended for older people who spend more time indoors. Whatever be the lifestyle of your loved ones, there are available systems suitable for them. It is worthy to note that all senior citizens should have life alert.
9. Round-the-clock protection
MAS assists older adults at all times. Whether an emergency occurs in the morning or at midnight, professional operators are always on stand-by to offer them swift and good assistance.
As an older person, living alone may cause worry to your friends and relatives. Unfortunately, their fears are not unfounded, as it is estimated that 30% to 40% of seniors fall each year in Canada. Older persons are also faced with environmental dangers such as fire outbreaks. In an emergency, expedited medical assistance is necessary and can save the lives of older adults.
With Medical Alert Systems, relatives and friends can worry less about their older parents and relatives as the special device guarantees quick aid when needed.