Not sure what to buy your older loved ones this holiday season? We’ve rounded up a list of gifts that can greatly impact an older adult’s quality of life, as well as help combat challenges that come along with aging, including mobility, safety, and loneliness. Check out our robust gift guide including a variety of areas that will help your loved ones age well this holiday season and beyond.
To meet the ever-changing needs of aging Americans, there is an increased demand for day-to-day support through technology. Some of the best technology for seniors not only provides some sort of service that aims to improve their overall quality of life but also enhances their independence. Some of our favorite, easy-to-use technology gifts that benefit both older adults and caregivers include:
“Alexa, what’s the weather today?” “Alexa, add dish soap to my shopping list.” “Alexa, play Frank Sinatra songs.” These are examples of how the voice-controlled Amazon Echo can provide an array of helpful information that can make seniors’ lives easier. To function, the device needs to be plugged in and connected to a WiFi network and the user needs to either have a smartphone or computer to complete the set-up process. Once set-up, the Echo can call people in your address book, send voice messages, book you a ride with Uber or Lyft, create routines, set reminders, and more. Simply say “Alexa” within earshot of your Echo and you’re good to go!
*Prices range between $19.99 and $69.99
Consumer Cellular: grandPad
grandPad is the first tablet designed specifically for seniors, developed to make communication for older adults both simpler and safer with their built-in wireless connection. The touch-screen tablet easily connects seniors with family, friends, and caregivers through video calling, one-touch voice email, apps, and more to help reduce loneliness and increase connectivity.
*$200 up-front of $10 per month for 20 months, plus $40 per month for unlimited use.
LifeAssist Technologies: Reminder Rosie
Reminder Rosie is a personalized, voice-controlled reminder system, designed to help those with memory loss. Up to 25 custom reminders can be programmed in any language to help keep an older adult’s tasks on-track. Anyone can review the day’s reminders with a simple voice command. From medication reminders to appointments to everyday tasks, Reminder Rosie helps you never miss a beat!
*Retails at $99.95 at Amazon.com
Miracle-Ear: Hearing Aids
“What?!” If you often find yourself repeating this question when people are talking to you, you are not alone. A staggering one in three people between the ages of 65 and 74 have hearing loss (NIDCD). Miracle-Ear uses technology to remove the barriers of hearing loss, specializing in customizable hearing solutions that are both comfortable and discrete. They match the right hearing aid solution to an individual’s hearing loss, lifestyle, and needs. The gift of hearing can be life-changing for those who need it--no more shying away from conversations, providing clarity where there was once confusion.
Medical Guardian: Medical Alert System & Wearable
A Medical Guardian medical alert system is the perfect gift for those looking for an extra layer of protection, peace of mind, and immediate emergency or non-emergency assistance. New this year, Medical Guardian offers a wearable medical alert smartwatch, Freedom Guardian, which incorporates features that provide day-to-day support and value for users and their loved ones. Freedom Guardian is a wearable device which easily blends in with everyday activities, ensuring connectivity, safety, and reliability. Its features were designed specifically with the senior in mind, including unlimited Emergency/SOS Calls, Speech-to-Text Messaging, Calendar, and Appointment Reminders, Local Weather Forecast, and more. Additionally, a caregiver or family member can easily and conveniently check on their loved ones directly through Freedom Guardian’s Companion Mobile app.
*Prices vary depending on the type of medical alert system. Free Shipping & Activation with No Long-Term Contract
Considering the sheer volume of financial, government, medical, and even personal data stored on Internet-connected devices and online accounts, the Baby Boomer generation is now especially susceptible to cybercrime. But older adults are also at risk of experiencing attacks or medical emergencies at home. Older adults have a higher chance of falling, as one in four Americans aged 65+ falls each year according to the NCOA. To keep seniors safe inside and outside of the home, as well as online, these gifts can provide some much-needed protection:
LifeLock is an American identity theft protection company, which includes threat detection, potential fraud alerts, stolen fund reimbursements, and live member support. To defend the information of Internet-connected seniors, we recommend LifeLock’s Ultimate Plus membership subscription with Norton Security. It offers security protection for up to five devices and includes up to $1 million in reimbursement for stolen funds, expense compensation, coverage for lawyers and experts, and more. This December, Medical Guardian is partnering with LifeLock to offer both peace of mind and comprehensive identity theft protection to customers.
*LifeLock Ultimate Plus Membership is $29.99/month for the first year
Lutron Light Sensor
It can often be difficult to turn on every light as you make your way throughout your home, especially at night. To make your walk from point A to point B as safe as possible, Lutron has a variety of sensors that will automatically light your way and help to reduce fall risk. Lutron’s system includes sensor switches, dual-circuit switches, and dimmer sensors to guide you through dark passages with less risk. Be confident enough to travel from room to room without having to strain your eyes feeling for a light switch, or worry about tripping over something lurking in the darkness.
*Prices vary depending on which type of light sensor best fits your needs
Ring: Video Doorbell
Home security is at your fingertips with Ring’s Video Doorbell. With built-in motion sensors, homeowners can receive virtual notifications that allow them to see, hear, and speak to visitors in real time from anywhere. This built-in rechargeable battery doorbell is perfect for keeping your home safe from intruders and theft, as homeowners receive motion-activated alerts that can potentially stop criminals in their tracks, and prevent potential home break-ins.
*Video Doorbell is $99.99, as low as $17/month at 0% APR
Once you have experienced a fall, your chances are doubled for falling again—which is why understanding fall risks, prevention, and costs are crucial to one’s short-term and long-term healthcare. In 2017, we rounded up a list of gifts for older adults that can help prevent falls. This year, we’re highlighting new tools that will assist older adults in moving freely and safely.
Car Cane: Portable Handle
For some extra assistance getting in and out of a vehicle, Car Cane provides you with the leverage to lift yourself up and out of any seat. It’s a portable, non-slip handle that instantly hooks into a car’s door latch, and has a built-in flashlight so that you’re able to see where you’re going. After Car Cane is unhooked from the door latch, it can conveniently be stored away in a door or glove box. And don’t worry about weight—Care Cane can hold up to 350 pounds!
*Currently $10.79 on Amazon, prices may change when the sale ends
Hugo: Quadpod Offset Cane
The Quadpod Offset Cane is light and compact, offering balance without bulk. Its height can be adjusted between 28” and 39”, it has a cushioned handle and is designed to conveniently and independently stand on its own. This cane is perfect for someone who is experiencing difficulty with gait and balance.
Stander: Security Pole & Curve Grab Bar
According to the National Institute on Aging, 80 percent of falls take place in the bathroom. While this adjustable Security Pole & Curve Grab Bar can’t prevent falls, it can be extremely helpful for someone who needs help climbing to a standing position. Thanks to its easy-stand hand grips, and easy assembly--no screws or bolts required--this product can be used with 7 to10 foot ceilings, and be removed and replaced anywhere in the house since it is tension mounted.
*$159.00 & Free Shipping on Amazon
Aging is one of the inevitabilities of life; it’s unavoidable. Over the years, our bodies begin to change both physically, and psychologically—it can often be frustrating and debilitating. Through a commitment to self-care, your body’s physical and mental effects can be greatly reduced, leading to increased life and vitality throughout your Golden Years. Some of our favorite gifts to help with healthy aging will also make your life a whole lot easier this holiday season:
HelloFresh: Meal Kit
HelloFresh makes life in the kitchen stress-free, simple, and delicious. As older adults often have difficulty with transportation and getting to the grocery store, this meal delivery service offers a variety of food options that are delivered right to your door. Easy-to-follow recipes are delivered weekly, resulting in a fun cooking experience for all!
*Offering the most recipe variety and meals starting at $6.99
Medical Guardian: MGRx
Medical Guardian has teamed up with MedMinder to provide an automatic pill dispenser and prescription delivery service, in order to further help older adults remain independent, and caregivers stress-free. MGRx has a built-in cellular connection and offers medication reminder alerts, a pharmacy and delivery service, easy-to-access virtual medication reports (and more) to help seniors manage their daily medications, easier.
*Call 1-800-668-9200 for more information!
SilverSneakers is a free fitness program for seniors that provides free gym access and exclusive classes aimed to help older adults stay active, social, and independent. This program includes access to participating gyms and fitness centers at more than 15,000 locations nationwide. All as you need to do is check your eligibility, find a location near you, and take your 16-digit SilverSneakers number with you in order to access gym amenities.
*SilverSneakers is offered by 1 in 4 Medicare Plans. Check your current plan to learn if you’re covered!
Holiday Shopping On A Budget
While the holiday season is often known as “the most wonderful time of year,” it can also be one of the most expensive times of years, especially for those on a fixed income. If you’re feeling a little financially stressed, check out our guide for holiday shopping on a budget. Remember, no matter what you buy, it’s the thought that counts the most!
Happy shopping and Happy Holidays!