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The Most Helpful Apps for Seniors

December 1, 2018

Smartphones and other smart devices have become part of everyday life for most people – including seniors! Oder adults can use their apps for their smart devices to help track medications and blood pressure, keep their minds sharp, connect with loved ones, and even help find where their car is parked.

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The use of smart devices by seniors continues to grow. Research shows that 42 percent of American adults over age 65 owned a smart phone in 2016, up from only 18 percent in 2013. But with thousands of apps available, it can be daunting to find the ones that are most helpful for senior citizens. Based on different topics of interest to seniors, here are several apps that can be extremely helpful. Many of the apps are free but some may charge a small fee to download. Most apps are available for Apple products and many are also available for Android users.

Health and Safety:

  • Blood Pressure Companion: This blood pressure app is a blood pressure, heart rate and weight tracker. These measurements are contained in charts that you can show your doctor. You can get the Android version as well.
  • GoodRx: This app can help you save money on prescription drugs. It compares prices from more than 60,000 pharmacies to find you the best price and also sends you coupons.
  • Pillboxie: The Pillboxie app reminds you to take medications at scheduled times that are easy to set. Customize your medications by color and drag them into the sectioned pillbox. Designed and developed by a registered nurse. Also available for Android.
  • Red Panic Button: This app is like the panic button that people wear around their necks. Press the red panic button and a message goes out to a designated list of people that you need help right away. It also includes the address where you are located. Red Panic Button is free for iOS and Android.
  • ICE – In Case of Emergency: This is a potentially life-saving app that can be customized to include important health information as well as a list of emergency contacts. Access to such information can save crucial time in the event of any emergency. The app is available for Android, while ICE Medical Standard is the iPhone equivalent.

Games and Entertainment:

  • Old Time Radio: For seniors who wish enjoy the radio programs of yesteryear, Old Time Radio for Android and OTR Streamer for iOS offers over 10,000 shows from times past. From comedy and crime, to drama and westerns, these apps provide hours of entertainment to listeners, free of charge.
  • LibriVox: For Android and iPhone, this app provides access to more than 15,000 free audiobooks read by the volunteers, including all genres from the timeless classic fiction literature to non-fiction novelties. This is perfect for older people who have trouble reading print editions.
  • Lumosity: This free app for iPhone, iPad and Apple watch offers a comprehensive brain training program designed to put your critical thinking, memory, and problem-solving skills to the test. It keeps your mind sharp with some of the best brain games available, designed by neuroscientists working to enhance memory, attention and other skills. Also for  Android
  • Crosswords Classic: This classic crossword puzzle app has hundreds of puzzles and adds new ones daily. ForiPhone, iPad and Android
  • Sudoku:Another great option is the Sudoku app for Android, iPhone, iPad. This is the numbers version of the classic crossword and can be played anywhere.

Informational Apps and Helping Hands:

  • AARP: This free app from AARP provides a calendar of local events in your area as well as discounts that are available with your AARP membership. Download at theiTunes App Store or  Android Market
  • Senior Savings: This iPhone app helps you track down discounts and sales, and tells you which stores, hotels, and restaurants offer discounts for seniors.
  • EyeReader: is a reading magnifier app that utilizes the LED light of the iPhone, providing a solution to the problem of reading small print in dark areas such as reading menus in restaurants. Hold your iPhone over a book or some paperwork, and your phone turns into a magnifying glass, with a light to help brighten the text.
  • Follow My Car: Never forget where you parked your car again! This iOS app allows you to find your car in the blink of an eye. Park your car everywhere and relax, Follow My Car will remember the exact location of your parking spot and calculate the shortest path to your car. ForAndroid, try ParKing.
  • Find My iPhone: You’ll never lose your iPhone or iPad with this app. If you leave your phone somewhere or it gets stolen, this app will locate where it is.

While many older Americans shy away from technology, these helpful apps can enhance daily life, keep body and mind healthy and provide hours of entertainment, especially for senior citizens.

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