Do you find yourself worrying about your elderly parents who live alone? Anxious that they may not be safe or are struggling to cope?
Thanks to the latest technology, there’s no need to remain in the dark. Remote monitoring allows you to monitor elderly parents remotely and calm your anxious mind.
Is your elderly loved one safe at home?
These days, it’s common for families to live geographically dispersed, and the number of elderly people living alone is growing every year. This means that many of us have elderly parents who don’t live close by.
It can be a continuous worry for loved ones. Knowing that an elderly parent is living alone without support, and if they don’t currently have care needs, this is very likely to change in the future. This situation is bound to cause anxiety for all involved.
If your parent isn’t receiving home care, such as that from Country Cousins, then the likelihood is that very few people know about their well-being on a day-to-day basis. Home monitoring systems can provide reassurance and insights to keep your loved one safe.
Types of home monitoring devices
There’s a wide range of home monitoring devices on the market these days. Here is a selection of the ones best suited to monitoring elderly parents remotely.
Smart motion sensors set up around the home monitor a person’s daily patterns and send daily reports via an app.
StackCare works by collecting data from small wireless sensors positioned in areas of the home such as the bathroom, bedroom, kitchen and lounge. These sensors monitor activity levels and gauge temperature. Artificial intelligence learns your loved one’s daily patterns so it can identify any unusual behaviour, such as longer times spent in bed or less time than usual in the kitchen. It then collates the information into daily reports sent directly to your mobile, tablet, or smartwatch via an App and also sends alerts if there are any significant changes.
Sentai is a smart voice device designed to combine motion sensors and Amazon Alexa to provide daily reminders, activity monitoring and conversation powered by AI.
Sentai is a small device, similar looking to Amazon Alexa, that offers daily reminders, such as when to take medication or put the rubbish out and movement monitoring. It also has voice-enabled chat, enabling the carer and care recipient to receive messages, ask questions and more.
The software allows family care providers to see valuable insights through the Sentai dashboard, which can be viewed on any phone, tablet or computer, enabling continuous monitoring and the ability to identify changes in routine.
Canary Elderly Monitoring System
The Canary Elderly Monitoring System utilises sensor technology and a monitoring system to keep your loved one safe. The sensors are placed around the home so the system can keep you updated on changes and movements. From room temperature to nighttime bathroom visits, the sensors relay valuable information without requiring Wi-Fi or a phone line, but a mobile phone signal is necessary. The updates enable you to make informed decisions, intervene promptly, and prevent issues from escalating.
The system includes 4 motion sensors, 2 door magnet sensors and 1 visitor smart card and can be set up very easily with the accompanying instructions.
The ECARE21 App, downloadable at the Apple Store, is easy to set up and use. Rather than using home monitoring technology, it measures your loved one’s vital statistics using a device that the individual wears.
The app requires a monthly subscription and allows you to monitor your family member’s heart rate, sleep patterns, and other vital statistics. By establishing a baseline for vital signs it can help you recognise potential issues in their well-being without the need for home monitoring technology. The App integrates with smartwatches and other devices so you can easily stay informed about your loved one’s well-being.
SECOM Smart Wellness
SECOM Smart Wellness is a home security system with some pretty smart features.
This comprehensive security system integrates motion sensors, CCTV, and smart devices into one system. It allows you to receive alerts for unexpected activity, such as when the front door has been left open, access intelligent video alerts, and stay informed about crucial activities remotely. This innovative home care solution creates a profile of the home user’s typical environment and daily routines, notifying caregivers if there are changes in behaviour patterns.
It can be set up to provide alarms when specific actions are done or not done, such as a warning if a cabinet hasn’t been opened to take medication or the person hasn’t gotten out of bed at their usual time.
The Tec2Care device is a compact sensor installed in the kitchen. The gadget learns your loved one’s routine, tracking activities like kettle usage, meal preparation times, and dishwashing to create a behavioural profile. Temperature and humidity sensors are included in the environmental monitoring, detecting potential issues like excessive heat or cold. This is helpful for those at risk of fuel poverty and can warn of potential hazards such as unattended pots on the stove.
The individual doesn’t need to interact with the device at all. Data is uploaded every 4 hours for analysis and the app automatically updates the person’s status on the App dashboard – green when all is well, amber when something is different, and red when there could be an emergency or a big change in routine is detected. Amber and red alerts notify the family or care provider to check in or contact the emergency services. Once a day, the App generates an email with an overview of the individual’s status for the previous 24 hours.
Taking Care Sense
The Taking Care Sense device is similar to the Tec2Care monitoring system in that it uses one sensor in the kitchen to detect and analyse patterns of movement and behaviour in the individual occupying the house. However, it differs in the way in which it reports a potential issue.
A discreet cordless sensor, similar in appearance to a smoke alarm, is installed in the kitchen to monitor the atmosphere and activity. Alerts are sent to the Taking Care central team if changes are detected. The Resolution Team investigates and makes a well-being call to your loved one. If there’s no response, a nominated person is contacted for further checks on the household.
Taking Care Sense can be added to an existing personal elderly alarm package or used as a stand-alone monitoring system.
Taking Care Safe Home Alert
From the same company as the Taking Care Sense monitor, the Taking Care Safe Home Alert is a complete home monitoring system with sensors placed around the home. This system requires broadband internet, a router with a spare network port and a telephone line to work.
The sensors learn and track your loved one’s daily routine and provide immediate alerts, like an open front door at night, go to the Emergency Resolution Team for further investigation. Additionally, the individual can press a button on the alarm pendant they wear to speak with the Resolution Team any time, day or night.
Using the reporting App, you can see changes, such as decreased eating and drinking, enabling you to take early action.
Helpful devices to help keep your elderly loved one safe
Helping your elderly parent stay safe at home can include more than just home monitoring devices. There are a huge number of gadgets available on the market to enhance safety, provide reminders, and monitor health.
Here are just a few types of products that can help you monitor your elderly parent at home, enhance their safety and provide peace of mind for you and your parent.
Personal alarms and fall detectors
The most commonly used safety devices among the elderly are personal alarms and fall detectors. Personal alarms provide assistance in case of falls or emergencies at home or when a person is out and about. They can be worn or carried, with options like wrist or neck devices, buttons, or pull cords at home.
Different types of personal alarms include basic alarms with loud alerts, alarms notifying family members, monitored alarms for a 24-hour service, fall detectors, and GPS tracking alarms, allowing location awareness for families and caregivers.
Door and window sensors/property exit sensors
Door and window sensors are great tools if you have an elderly parent who is forgetful, at risk of wandering or is living with dementia. These devices can monitor a single door or multiple doors, and the same with the windows in the home. Some devices are worn by the individual and have a GPS tracking device for those at risk of wandering and getting lost.
With 50% of home fires starting in the kitchen, stove alarms can be a smart addition to an elderly parent’s home.
A stove alarm, also known as a “cooker cut-off device,” detects temperature, smoke and duration of heat and switches off the power to the cooker to prevent fires. Depending on the brand, most operate by sensing heat, cooking fumes (smoke and steam), or human presence.
Carbon monoxide monitors
This may seem like a standard device for most homes these days, but sometimes family caregivers overlook this basic but important safety device in the homes of their elderly loved ones. Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide monitors are best placed in kitchens and hallways.
There are several Apps and devices on the market that can help your elderly parent remember when to take their medications. These gadgets remind your loved one when, how and how much medication to take. They can be set for several reminders a day and even send prescription refill reminders to the caregiver.
How live-in care supports safety and well-being
No matter how many monitoring devices you set up it’s never the same as someone providing care and support to your elderly parent, on hand for all their needs and providing companionship and reassurance.
For total peace of mind for both you and your elderly parent, consider live-in care. This solution, which most elderly people prefer, offers not only personalised care but can be very cost-effective compared to residential alternatives.
There are numerous and substantial benefits to receiving live-in care; from maintaining independence in a much-loved home, providing companionship, supporting existing routines and hobbies, and supporting overall physical and mental health.
How Country Cousins can help
If you think your elderly loved one could benefit from live-in care, get in touch with us to find out more. At Country Cousins, we have been providing heartfelt home care in the community for over 60 years. We are the longest-running introductory live-in care agency in the UK.
This wealth of experience means we know exactly how to support our clients to live well at home with tailored care designed uniquely for them.
Talk to our team today
Get in touch with our friendly care team today to find out how we can help. We offer a free, no-obligation enquiry service and are happy to answer any questions you have.