Advances in technology brings new hope for the quality of life for seniors, from the ability to more quickly diagnose and treat various health conditions, to living an independent life for much longer. The natural progression of aging leaves some older persons isolated, no longer able to drive, and facing transportation problems to perform simple tasks such as grocery shopping to going to doctor’s appointments.
One of the most exciting advances on the horizon that could greatly impact the quality of life for seniors is the upcoming release of self-driving vehicles. These vehicles are expected to come on the market within seven to ten years, and will require programming in the destination, sitting back and enjoying the ride. This advance is expected to provide a higher level of freedom for those who living with diminished sight and reaction time or other physical conditions that make driving dangerous.
Appointments with various doctors are expected to significantly change. Many appointments will be conducted via a digital service where you are face-to-face with your doctor – onscreen. Many people who live in remote areas are already getting medical help in this manner, and the expectation is that the process will continue to expand. Click for an online appointment or consultation, and gain the ability to speak with your doctor in person without the need to be physically present.
As the science of robotics advances it is expected that seniors can get help from a robotic assistant for moving from wheelchair to bed, from chair to upright or other position. These robots are already in development, and could allow seniors to stay at home longer. A side benefit is that healthcare workers will be better protected from suffering the injuries associated with lifting, shifting and moving patients and nursing home residents.
The aging process often leads to memory problems. Apps already on the market are capable of reminding seniors of important events and appointments. Many of these apps were initially developed to assist those who have suffered some type of brain trauma and are proving to be effective for less serious conditions. The expectation is that there will be more applications developed specifically for seniors that will help them manage memory loss associated with aging.
Companies such as Amazon are actively working on advances in delivering everything you need directly to your door. Seniors may have their necessary food and other purchases, including prescriptions, delivered directly to their door – by drone.
New medical devices are expected to function far more effectively than in the past, including bionic hips and knees. Digital brain implants are already proving to be effective in treating disease such as Parkinson’s disease by “hotwiring” certain areas of the brain, and bypassing damaged areas. Called neuroprosthetics, these devices are expected to advance significantly in the near future, with many already in development.
The senior of the future will reap the advantages of these advances, with longer life, better quality of life, and more freedom.