Keeping connected via video calls

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic one of our most vulnerable groups of society; the elderly, are often the first to feel the negative effects of Government restrictions, when visitations are restricted due to being necessary to keep them safe. However thanks to video calls, physical distancing does not mean that we have to disconnect with our elderly loved ones!

Technology such as Facetime, Zoom, Skype, Whatsapp…and lots more, there are many solutions to video call and stay connected through a tablet, smart phone or computer.

Tech tips for the elderly to stay in touch with friends and family throughout the COVID-19 era

If your loved one isn’t particularly tech savvy, there’s no better time to teach them!

Once they are comfortable with video calling they can stay engaged in their loved ones lives, see their grandchildren and feel a sense of social connection and emotional presence that isn’t quite as significant on the normal telephone.

3 tips to help older adults get tech savvy and making video calls

  • Choosing the right device

Video chat is available on smartphones, tablets and computers. If they don’t already have a device that facilities video chat then consider screen size as a factor when purchasing one. A tablet may be the best choice as it provides a larger screen than a smartphone but is also small and light enough for them to carry around and chat from anywhere. If your loved one doesn’t have a device, that’s no problem! At Glenvale we have plenty on hand and are more than happy to organise a video call for you.

  • Choose the right app

If your loved one has an iPhone or iPad then it makes sense to teach them how to use Facetime. This is pre-installed and not really any different to making or answering a phone call. However it is limited to only being able to be used with other Apple device users; which may limit who they can communicate with. Other options are Skype, Zoom, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp.

  • Pre-install the apps and teach them how to use it

Sit down and go through the process together. You can try different apps to see which they find easiest, then set them up so all they have to do is hit the call button. It isn’t possible for you to visit due to Government restrictions, one of our personal carers will be more than happy to assist.

When teaching new technologies to the elderly, a lot of patience is required but the effort is worth it! The motivation is seeing family and friends when it wouldn’t usually be possible and right now our elderly community needs human connection more than ever.

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