The rise of mobile technology has brought an influx of mobile apps for seniors in recent years. You might already be familiar with or have downloaded popular communication apps (like Skype) or perhaps certain entertainment and productivity apps. The health industry is also propelling its way through the mobile space in leaps and bounds, offering a wide array of health apps to benefit the masses – seniors included.
In fact, the plethora of mobile applications that can be readily accessed right at your fingertips is impressive, to say the least!
The best thing about all these health applications is that older adults may leverage technology to keep their health in check. However, some adults are still trying to tread water in the ever-growing and changing sea of technology.
Why Seniors May Not Take Their Medications
According to the AMA, many seniors do not adhere to their medication schedules. Their condition may be under control, so they do not see the need to continue the routine. Many times, they just forget about the medication as it is no longer important to them. Little do they realize that their condition may reoccur with a much worse outcome if they refuse to take their medication. They may be on so many medications that the extra one that needs to be taken just falls off their radar.
LACK OF SICKNESS SYMPTOMS
Nonadherence might occur when there is a lack of symptoms. Patients who don’t feel any different when they start or stop their medicine might see no reason to take it. Additionally, once a patient’s condition is controlled, they may think the problem has been resolved and may discontinue using the medication. It is important to inform your patient that they may need to take the medicine for a long time.
FORGETTING ABOUT THE PRESCRIPTION
When a senior has so many important prescriptions, it is so easy to forget about that tiny blue pill that is just one more to take.
MISUNDERSTANDINGS BETWEEN PHYSICIAN AND PATIENT
It is common for a patient not to understand the need for the medicine, or even how long they must stay on the schedule. If a patient has a chronic condition and their condition is no longer a daily threat to the patient, it is easy to forget to take a medication, especially one that reduces the risk of something happening to the patient. A patient may feel better so think they are better.
Another reason for this misunderstanding is that many times all people only hear what they want to hear. The information goes in one ear and out the other.
Time For an App Grade!
Unfortunately, there is no way your brain can actually take on massive loads of information without losing a little in the process. You may need to monitor your weight, physical activity, diet, heart rate, pulse rate, blood glucose levels, etc. Plus, there are medication schedules. All of this – you may be doing every single day.
This could be a severe information overload, so it is helpful to use some of the apps for seniors to manage their schedules and health.
Technology is here to make our lives easier and that also means taking advantage of smartphones, tablets, or computers. Using some health apps on your mobile device would make it easy for you to track data or analyze information. This can take a HUGE amount of weight off your head.
Moreover, seniors who have used certain health apps attest to better health monitoring, better compliance, and significant progress in their health.
It’s time to upgrade the way you track or manage your health with 5 of these useful health apps:
1. Medisafe App
In many cases, people who are trying to manage certain health conditions usually need to take 2, 3, or maybe 4 different kinds of pills two to three times a day. And because it can be difficult for many to remember details such as the right medication to be taken as well as the right dose and the right time for taking these pills, only half of the patients are basically able to adhere to their treatment regimens.
Using an app called Medisafe, seniors may now have a better chance of improving their compliance with medications.
Medisafe is an app that allows the management of medications more efficiently, giving an easier and more visual way to remember medications. The app will send a reminder to your smartphone when the prescription is to be taken. As a bonus, the app will remind you when to refill your prescription. The app is free for users so there is no reason not to give it a try.
It is a proven fact that many dispensed drugs may in fact not be the correct drug prescribed. Pharmacies are doing a much better job of making sure the correct medicine is dispensed. Medicare takes this one step further. It gives you an accurate picture and description of your medication. It shows the name of the drug as well as a picture of the pill. If your pill is blue and the picture shows a red pill, it is time to ask more questions.
2. Better Help App
Everyone has good and bad days. With our inundation of social media. it is often hard to have a good day. You look in the mirror and may not like what you see. Then you read that people with traits or features like you are not the best. You may internalize these conversations without even realizing it. Next thing you know, every day is a bad day.
Better Help recommends affordable private therapy. However, we all need more help. This program is not free. Not knowing where to start is a giant hurdle. The information gleaned from Better Help is a start. Soon you will realize that it is not you. Social Media has a way of bringing us down. Better Help will bring us up. Just what is needed.
3. WebMD App
A popular website that provides an immense wealth of health and medical information is WebMD. It can be installed as a mobile app.
The WebMD mobile app gives you 24/7 access to health information. It provides support tools to help you learn more about your health. The information can help you make the right decisions related to your health. You also get to personalize your app by creating and saving your own list of drugs, conditions, and articles relevant to you.
- Symptom Checker – allows you to select a part of your body you have trouble with, choose your symptoms, and view possible health conditions
- Drugs & Treatments – contains a database of information on medications, supplements, side effects, warnings, etc.
- First Aid Information – provides an outline of treatment/management tips for different medical emergencies from allergic reactions and asthma attacks to choking and broken bones (even without internet) as well as indications for you to call 911.
- Local Health Listings – allows you to find your closest hospital, pharmacy, and physician including addresses, phone numbers, and maps
- Conditions – contains a list of comprehensive yet easy-to-understand information about various medical diseases and conditions including their causes, symptoms, diagnosis, questions to ask your doctor, medical terms, treatments, and tests/procedures,
- Pill Identification Tool – allows you to identify your prescriptions drugs and OTC (over-the-counter) medicines by the pill’s shape, color, and imprint
- Healthy Target – allows you to track your progress on a daily basis as well as connect wearable devices and obtain actionable insights by the end of the week
- Healthy Living – access to a daily lifestyle magazine where you get to know more about health tips, articles, quizzes, slideshows, fun facts, and recipes.
- Download WebMD on Android, or iPhone.
4. Walgreens App
Walgreens seeks to go beyond just living up to its brand through the Walgreens App. The app offers access to healthcare clinics as well as a rewards program that promotes healthy living behaviors.
- Refill by Scan – allows you to scan the barcode on your prescription bottle and pick up your refill in an hour; you will also get alerted when it’s time to refill your prescriptions
- Pill Reminder – enables you to set reminders when it’s time to take your medications
- Immunizations – helps you identify the right immunizations for you, so your health can be protected
- Pharmacy Chat – gives you access to live chat with a pharmacy professional whenever you seek health advice or account support
- Rx Status and History – helps you keep track of your current and past prescriptions, transfer prescriptions, request new Rx, print Rx records, and more
- Healthcare Clinic – enables you to look for a healthcare clinic near you and schedule an appointment using your phone
- Weekly Ad & Coupons – gives you access to great deals each week, clip coupons to your Balance Rewards card
- Cash Rewards for Healthy Choices – earn points when you set and meet “myWalgreens” health goals.
- Store Locator / Product Search – allows you to set your preferred store and search their inventory
- Download on iOS (iPhone & iPad) and Android
5. Blood Pressure Monitor App
This is an easy-to-use app that allows you to monitor and record your blood pressure. Blood Pressure Monitor is easy to use has a quick tracking feature, and contains a detailed recording of your blood pressure, resting heart rate, and weight. Please note that this app DOES NOT TAKE YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE. You will need a blood pressure cuff and then log the data into the app. You will be able to monitor your blood pressure trends and then share that data with your personal physician.
- Records systolic and diastolic blood pressure, pulse, weight
- Auto-calculates mean arterial pressure, pulse pressure, and body mass index (BMI)
- Allows you to export a report in a CSV or pdf format
- Detailed graphs and statistics to give you a visual depiction of how your blood pressure changes over time
- Reminders daily to help you monitor your blood pressure
With so many health apps available in the market today, find the ones most beneficial to you. Implementing technology into your daily routine could make your health monitoring easier and more thorough. Read more about health and safety apps for seniors at GuideForSeniors.com