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Apple Watch: Why should the elderly own one?

by Yvonne Ng
Apple Watch, elderly, Apple, elderly Apple Watch
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Smartwatches have come a long way; from basic features like notifications, alarms and weather forecasts to advanced features like fitness tools and health tracking, a smartwatch is now a wearable that can help those who are trying to improve their lifestyle. 

The Apple Watch is one of the most popular wearables in the market right now, and there are a few reasons why. Not only does it have an intuitive UI, it also has an extensive amount of features that makes it a great smartwatch no matter your age. 

But today we’re going to discuss which features are beneficial to the elderly and why they in particular should own an Apple Watch, especially during the pandemic as we aren’t allowed to travel between states.

Emergency SOS

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Not all parents/grandparents are tech savvy, and that’s even more worrisome if they by themselves. One of the best Apple features is the Emergency SOS feature. 

Emergency SOS allows its user to call emergency services and their emergency contacts just by pressing and holding the side button on the Apple Watch. This is convenient for the elderly because unlike a smartphone, the smartwatch will always be with them (as long as they’re wearing it). 

For example, if an elderly fell down and couldn’t get up on his own, he can just use the watch to notify his family and emergency services — even without his smartphone nearby. This will also put you at ease, knowing that your family members will not be completely helpless in situations like above, even when they’re alone.

Here’s an article that proves how useful the Apple Watch can be in an emergency.

Fall Detection

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Another practical features for the elderly or anyone with weaker health is Fall Detection. This feature can detect when you fall, and automatically call the emergency services if your Apple Watch doesn’t detect any movement after the fall. 

As we age, our health deteriorates and we’re more likely to suffer injuries when it comes to accidental falls and what not. This means that it’s even more dangerous for the elderly when they’re in such situations, but with an Apple Watch that can detect an accident when it happens, at least the elderly can get help before it’s too late.

ECG

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It wasn’t until two months ago ECG is made available to Malaysia via watchOS 7.5. This app monitors your heart rate and rhythm, allowing it to discover cardiac abnormalities which can be an early symptom of various heart diseases.

When an Apple Watch user experience irregular heart rhythm, the ECG app can capture the data and export it as PDF to be shared with his doctor. If the user recorded serious symptoms during the ECG recording, he’ll also get a prompt to call emergency services.

Overly high/low heart rate notifications

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We may not notice these things, but devices like the Apple Watch can check when a user has high/low heart rates that are unusual. These unusual heart rate readings can cause heart failure, chest pain, hypo/hypertension and even cardiac arrest.

At least with an Apple Watch, you’ll be notified when your heart rate is abnormal, so you can take precautionary measures.

So, why should the elderly get an Apple Watch specifically?

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The Apple Watch has one advantage over many other smartwatches — you can check your family member’s health information if given permission. For our parents or grandparents who aren’t as tech savvy, this is useful because we can keep track of their health status through Shared Health Data on the Health app.

With the right settings, you can access your family member’s activity goals, health data and even edit their Medical ID for them. Simply put, the Apple Watch allows you to monitor the elderly’s health, discover any signs of abnormalities — all without the need for you to be right next to them. 

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The Apple Watch is also convenient in the sense that its user can call or text their contacts from the watch itself; the only downside is its small screen, which may be difficult for those who are visually impaired. 

That being said, we think the Apple Watch has more pros than cons and it’s a great smartwatch to get if you want to monitor your family member’s wellbeing.

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