Driving an automobile can be dangerous for people of all ages but especially for seniors. Did you know that the chance of a fatal crash rise after a person has reached the age of 70? There are several warning signs to be aware of when it comes to seniors safely being on the road. AAA offers a free self assessment if you are interested in your own ability to drive on the open road. The assessment is only 15 questions. A few of the key warning signs are:
Damage to a seniors vehicle
One of the most obvious indications that it may be time for a senior to stop driving is an increase in damage to the seniors vehicle. The damage can be minimal like scratches and dings to more excessive damage. If you notice that your senior loved one appears to have damage to their vehicle it is important to jump on the situation as soon as possible and find out what factors caused the damage.
Forgetting where the senior was going
With old age often comes memory loss. Memory loss could possibly be an indication of Alzheimer’s disease. Seniors who get in a vehicle and forget where they are going frequently should be cause for alarm. What happens if your loved one forgets how to get back home? or forgets the rules of the road. If you believe your loved one is having problems remembering where they are going it may be time to look into other options for transportation. Have you looked into homecare services? Now may be the time.
Senior is experiencing an increase in traffic tickets
We all must abide by the laws of the road. If your loved one is getting more and more speeding tickets or other moving violations it may be time to take away the keys. An increase is moving violations is not just physically dangerous for a senior but it can also be financially challenging. If you see this issue occurring in your seniors life make sure they understand the rules of the road, and access them at the same time.
There are many options available for seniors who may no longer be able to operate a motor vehicle. From public transportation to Uber it is becoming easier to live a life without having to have access to a vehicle of your own. Home care may also be a great option for a senior looking to commute without having to drive an automobile them self. Have you had to take away your parents keys? What was your approach? Leave a comment down below.
Lets face it technology can be confusing even for some of us in the younger generation. Seniors often find themselves having trouble learning the ins and outs of technology, and how to use technology to make their lives easier and more engaged. If used right technology can be a great outlet for seniors and their families. Technology can allow seniors to easily communicate with their loved ones, keep family member and friends up to date with what is going on in their lives, and even have daily conversations with their grandchildren! Here are a few essentials to keep in mind when introducing your senior loved one to technology:
Be patient with your senior loved one
As I mentioned above using new technology can be challenging for seniors. They are not always use to how fast the world is changing around them. The way we communicate is changing with social media platforms, text, and instant messaging platforms. Give your senior loved one the encouragement that they need to continue to learn how to use to technology they are trying to adapt to.
If your senior loved one is having challenges learning how to use social media their are plenty of great free resources available online to make the process easier. Take a look at the following resource available from Senior Care Corner.
Take your time introducing new tech to seniors
It is much easier to learn how to use technology one piece at a time. Take the time to brainstorm what technology platforms will make the biggest difference to the seniors life. What are they trying to accomplish? What specific tasks are they attempting to make easier. Is the task communication? or is it making new friends? or getting involved in a group online? or learning something new? there are plenty of opportunities for your senior loved one to do all of the following and more online. That being said it is key to sit down with them and address what they hope to accomplish with the help of technology.
Enroll a Senior in a Class on Technology
The other day I went to the library and they were offering free computer courses for seniors. I am sure that my local library is not the only one in the world offering this type of course for seniors and other adults. Take advantage of these opportunities to teach a senior the fundamentals of how to use technology. Be a leader and go with them to these courses. It is much easier and more fun to learn when you share the engagement and new leanings with your loved one.
Where should you and your senior loved one start
I am consistently asked what are the best social media platforms for seniors to start on, and what are the best mobile devices for seniors. Their is no straightforward answer for this question as it depends on again what the seniors goals are with the platform or tool. That being said in my opinion the easiest social media platform for a senior to learn and use on a daily basis is facebook.com. As far as mobile devices Samsung has a pretty cool feature on their galaxy line to make the phone more basic. Start with the basics on the Samsung device and let the senior work their way to using the device with all of the features.
Would you like to know how long you’re going to live? If you’re an older adult, try measuring your walking speed. How fast you walk says more about you than you think. According to University of Pittsburgh researchers, seniors who walk faster live to an older age than those who move along at a snail’s pace. Is walking speed a good indicator of longevity?
Walking Fast: Is It a Marker for Longevity?
Researchers at University of Pittsburgh measured the walking speed of 34,000 older adults (age 65 and over). They found that older adults who walked faster lived longer on average. In fact the magic number seems to be a walking speed of 3.3 feet per second, which is a little over two miles per hour. Seniors who walked at this speed or faster lived longer on average. So compelling were the results of this study that researchers suggest that walking speed may be an accurate way to identify older adults at a higher risk for dying.
The question is which comes first? Older adults who are healthy are likely to walk faster, and the fact that they’re healthier means they would probably live longer anyway. Or does walking faster actually increase life span in older people? No one knows for sure, but this study suggests that walking speed could be a marker for longevity in older people. In fact, researchers go so far as to say it’s as accurate as blood pressure, heart rate and other objective parameters of health and well-being.
It’s not surprising that walking faster would say something about an older person’s general state of health. Walking at a rapid pace puts stress on the lung, heart, muscles and joints – and taxes every organ system, at least to some degree. Seniors with failing health are by necessity going to walk at a slower pace.
Walking Speed and Living a Longer Life
Walking speed may be a good indicator of overall health and longevity in older people, and it’s one that’s easy to measure – no blood draw required. Staying active while you’re young can help you get to those seniors years where all of that activity will pay off with a faster walking speed – and a longer life..
Need a companion for your long walks? check out our blog post on the best dog breeds for seniors
Ivanhoe.com. “Walk Fast, Live Longer”