Modern technology has created many new and innovative ways to help seniors with entertainment, daily tasks, socializing, healthcare, and more.
However, these useful new technologies often seem overwhelming or confusing to seniors, so many would rather keep doing things the old familiar way even if new technology is easier in the long run.
If you want your senior parent to get the full advantages of modern technology, you need to take the time to help him or her adjust.
5 ways to help parents become more comfortable with technology
1. Start Slowly
A common senior complaint about technology is that it’s overwhelming. Many seniors feel this way because anytime someone tries to explain something to them, the person provides too much information all at once. Instead of trying to show your loved one every function of a phone or computer, just teach one task at a time.
2. Look for Intuitive & Senior-Friendly Devices
A lot of companies are putting time and research into creative devices that are user-friendly and intuitive to use. User-friendly technology may not have quite as many customization options available, but it still performs basic tasks without causing confusion. High-tech communication and easy-to-use devices can be helpful for aging adults, but those with serious health conditions may also need assistance from professional caregivers.
3. Get the Whole Family Involved
One of the most important steps to take when getting your parent used to technology is offering one-on-one instructions for using the device. Some seniors may feel awkward having other adults lecture them about how to use technology, so make it fun by getting the grandchildren to share their favorite technology with their grandparent.
4. Write Out Easy Cheat Sheets
Keep in mind most seniors aren’t going to switch over to using nothing but technology. Write down usernames and passwords for accounts in a secure location and provide easy steps for common tasks your loved one wants to do.
5. Talk About the Social Benefits of Technology
Many seniors feel like technology is cold and impersonal, so find a way to make the technology appeal to your loved one’s social needs. Describe how your loved one can talk to family members who live far away, share recipes with friends, or keep up with family news.
Thank you to Jessica Fairbanks from Home Care Assistance for this article.