Long gone are the days when smartwatches were just associated with a particular age group.
At present, these devices deliver so many features that pretty much anyone can find something they like – something that will help them get through the day and its chores.
In the last few years, we’ve seen many manufacturers add apps and functions that can be found extremely useful by senior citizens.
As people get older, it becomes more difficult for them to use their phones all the time. However, seniors can still be able to benefit from using apps on their smartwatches.
For example, one of the most useful ones is an app that notifies you when it gets dark outside. You might find this extremely helpful if you’re not able to see well at night.
The best part is that most of the apps designed for seniors are either 100% free, dirt cheap, or at least offer a trial period before you need to pay for them.
In today’s article, we will cover the most popular smartwatch features designed particularly with the elderly in mind.
Without further ado, let’s go.
Top 8 Smartwatch Apps for Seniors
Today’s list will cover some of the most useful built-in apps. In other words, these features are pre-installed in selected smartwatch models for seniors and all they require is a Bluetooth connection with an eligible smartphone.
1. Heart Rate Monitor
Many people are now aware that the heart is not just a muscle that pumps blood throughout our bodies – at least, that’s what people used to think in the past. Today, we know that the heart influences the health of pretty much every other organ in our body, including our brains. In fact, according to a study conducted by Harvard Medical School, people aged over 65 who deal with irregular HB are more likely to develop dementia or Alzheimer’s disease much faster than those whose HB is within normal limits.
The good news is that if you do have problems with your heart and choose to buy a smartwatch, chances are pretty high that you will be able to monitor your heart rate and even get notifications when it’s too high or low.
All the modern smartwatch models (released in 2015 or later) come with highly accurate heart rate monitors, many of which monitor your heart “performance” 24/7 and even send too low/too high heartbeat alerts.
Read also: Best stress monitor app for apple watch
Heart rate tracking is without a doubt extremely useful.
However, if you’re looking for the most complex insights into your heart performance, smartwatch models offering ECG (electrocardiogram) readings are the way to go.
The first smartwatch offering the function was Apple Watch Series 4. After a long review process, the app finally got FDA approval in September 2018.
Over the years, studies have shown that the application can be quite successful in detecting pre-existing heart issues, such as Atrial Fibrillation.
Apple was the first to offer the app but it’s far from the only manufacturer equipped with the reader at present. In the last year-or-so, other brands followed suit, including Samsung with its Galaxy Active line, or Fitbit (the Sense collection).
Read also: Is Samsung Watch ECG Reliable?
3. Blood Oxygen Monitor
The Blood Oxygen Monitor is another fantastic and helpful tool.
The sensor can precisely measure the oxygen saturation in your blood. In other words, it indicates the amount of oxygen transported from your lungs to the rest of your body by your red blood cells.
Especially in today’s pandemic-hit times, this feature can be extremely useful in staying on track with your everyday wellbeing, more so if you’re a senior citizen.
While the ECG app is available with a small selection of brands, models capable of measuring SpO2 levels in your blood are in tens if not hundreds.
4. Sleep Tracking
Sleep is so underrated yet it plays an integral role in human health and longevity.
It just so happens that most smartwatches include the ability to track your sleep.
While some brands offer just basic sleep tracking features, mainstays like Apple, Samsung or Garmin will be able to tell you exactly how long you were in deep sleep or REM sleep state. Some smartwatches can even tell you what time of the night you woke up.
As your age increases, so do the chance that you’ll be dealing with sleep apnea – a condition in which you stop breathing during sleep, sometimes for an extended period of time. In this case, a beautiful blend of smartwatch health features can help doctors determine if there’s an issue with your breathing while you’re sleeping.
The sleep tracking function in smartwatches is often very precise. On the other hand, you should keep in mind that it’s not always 100% accurate (because of things like movement misalignment or the fact that you might still be under your blanket).
5. Fall Detector
The fall detection app can be a life-saver – literally.
The app is able to detect when you’ve fallen and, if needed, send for help.
As older adults are more prone to falling, having the feature built-in is a fantastic way of staying safe without needing to think about things like wearing a clip to track your movements all day or putting sensors in your home.
At present, the number of models offering fall detectors is relatively small. Hence, the app is oftentimes labeled as “premium”. You can find it in the newer version of Apple Watches, Samsung’s Galaxy Active line, or many Fitbit products.
Seniors with memory problems can get lost easily.
That is why having the GPS function in a smartwatch can make a world of difference.
This feature has been around for a few years now, but it’s only recently that manufacturers realized what a lifesaver this technology can be for seniors and people with memory issues.
Most smartwatches have built-in GPS trackers nowadays. Some go even further, with the ability to give you turn-by-turn directions or offer suggestions when driving.
Having a smartwatch with GPS means never getting lost again – no matter where you are in the world.
It’s hardly a secret that movement is crucial to our health. That’s especially true in today’s times when society is so used to sitting for considerable periods of time. A human body was designed to move, not stand (or sit) still!
For seniors who already have a hard time staying in motion, a simple pedometer app can help immensely.
Most smartwatch models come with a built-in step counter these days. This feature is incredibly helpful when you’re trying to work on your physical activity and lead a healthier life.
Many of the smartwatches offering pedometers also come with movement reminders that send prompts in case you’ve been inactive for too long.
8. Medication Reminder
This app is a lifesaver for seniors with memory issues who also have to take medications on a daily basis.
There’s nothing worse than forgetting about what pills you’ve already taken and when you’re supposed to take them next.
That’s why most smartwatches come with a medication reminder app that sends notifications throughout the day, notifying you of what time it is and if there are any pills you need to take at this moment.
Many medication reminder apps can be integrated with other health-related functions – like sleep or blood pressure monitoring. That way, you’ll never forget about taking your meds again.
This app might not be available on every smartwatch out there, but it’s pretty much a standard feature nowadays.
In fact, most manufacturers have recognized how important this feature is. Hence, even the models that don’t come with the app pre-installed can get it later on through a software update!
If you’re a senior citizen looking for an easier way to stay up to date with your health, you’ll want to check out the apps listed in this article.
Some of these apps are tailored specifically for seniors, while others can be used by anyone who wants more control over their life from their smartwatch! In either case, it’s clear that there is no age barrier when it comes to using smartwatches.