How Amazon’s Alexa Benefits Seniors

By Matt Rogers, 9:00 am on

Many people are familiar with and use virtual assist software on their mobile devices daily. Siri became popular on smartphones, while Cortana was made available on electronic devices equipped with Windows 10. Alexa now joins the ranks. The app is available through Amazon.com and functions using mobile devices, PCs, or a miniature, wireless cylinder speaker. The unique capabilities of Alexa have made the software popular among senior citizens. 

About Alexa

Alexa creators did not have a particular demographic of consumers in mind during the development process. Some believe the app’s generic design and function makes Alexa more appealing to a wide range of consumers. Seniors with disabilities or limitations are sometimes reluctant to admit the benefits of having devices that are designed to serve in an assistive capacity. 

Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality elderly home care. Pembroke Pines families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably. Assistive devices such as Amazon’s Alexa, along with dedicated caregivers, can help seniors in numerous ways.

Amazon’s Alexa was designed for use in the home and responds to the owner’s voice commands via a Wi-Fi connection from a desktop computer, a laptop, smartphone, or tablet. Although the software detects vocal direction from anywhere in a room, soft-spoken individuals may prefer the optional wireless remote, which is also equipped with a receiver. 

Alexa is often used for turning a residence into a smart home. With merely a spoken word, Alexa turns electronic devices or lights on and off. You can also use the app to control electronic appliances. It can play your loved one’s favorite music, place shopping requests on Amazon, provide the current time or weather reports, and answer questions. The program also reads books downloaded onto devices equipped with Kindle. The app is also useful for ordering food, calling a taxi, or requesting an Uber ride. Alexa accomplishes various tasks using its own audible voice. 

Unintended Consumer

With its several functions, Alexa has proven to be a companion to older adults with physical limitations and mild cognitive or visual impairment. The app’s voice might also provide some social comfort to housebound seniors. Although the app does not have the ability to dial 911 in case of an emergency, Alexa does have the “Ask My Buddy” ability. This function enables users to call or send text messages to five contacts. The senior only needs to tell the app to contact a specific person or a first responder for help and Alexa sends the desired alert. 

Providing care for an aging loved one can be challenging at times, especially if the virtual assist program lists you as the first responder for help. You might get notifications 24/7. If you are the primary caregiver for a senior family member and you need respite care, Pembroke Pines, FL, Home Care Assistance is here to help. Our respite caregivers are trained to assist older adults with a wide variety of everyday tasks, including meal prep, physical activity, and personal hygiene. We also provide 24-hour care and specialized care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.

App Limitations

Despite all of the benefits of Alexa, the app does have some drawbacks. Although equipped with a speaking voice and useful for finding information, the program will not serve as a compassionate companion in terms of conversation. Vocal capabilities are also limited to UK and USA English along with German. However, developers are in the process of expanding the language database. The Alzheimer’s Association also expressed concerns that seniors with Alzheimer’s might forget to use Alexa as their as cognitive abilities change and their condition progresses, which might prove frustrating. 

Aging in place can present a few challenges for seniors living with dementia. However, they can still live independently at home with the help of professional in-home dementia care. Pembroke Pines, FL, families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide their elderly loved ones with mental and social stimulation, timely medication reminders, assistance with meal prep, and much more. Our caregivers are available around the clock to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life. To hire a friendly, dedicated, and highly professional caregiver for your senior loved one, give us a call today at (954) 374-8273.

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