In recent years, loneliness has turned into a global problem, with both young and older people being at high risk. In fact, many scientists say that loneliness has as many harmful effects on the body as smoking 15 cigarettes a day or obesity. Loneliness is also linked with a decline in cognitive fitness and physical health. Depression and stress due to loneliness are common in aging adults who live alone or at assisted-living facilities.
The sudden outbreak of the pandemic and complete lockdown that followed is has pushed the older generation towards self-isolation. In return, there is a fear that loneliness can do more harm to such people than the pandemic.
Humans are social beings who love being surrounded by people they care about and love. The mere thought that one would not be able to interact with others or have people around them like before overwhelms them.
So, is there a way to keep the threat of social-interaction alive during shutdown or self-isolation? The answer is yes. Many people are turning towards smart devices like the best tablet for senior citizens, smart home appliances, smart speakers, and Artificial-Intelligence enabled smart devices.
Many researchers and scientists are keen on knowing if AI-powered devices and bedside recreational digital appliances can help an older adult cope with loneliness.
While it’s true that a substantial population of aging adults is leaning towards technology, they find operating a complicated piece of gadget challenging. For such demographics, simple, smart speakers can prove compelling and incredibly helpful.
Why AI-enabled smart speakers are help aging seniors?
For some baby boomers, the idea of speaker device talking back to them or taking their command can be intimidating. However, studies have shown that such Artificial Intelligence technologies are capable of helping the older generation tackle loneliness in exciting ways. Many participants of one study conducted to demonstrate the effect of AI technology in older people had an enjoyable and fun experience while interacting with smart speakers, while several participants continued using such devices even after the study.
So, what makes AI-powered devices effective?
Handheld devices like smartphones and tablets are a preferred choice of gadgets to stay connected with others. Such devices offer the ease of connecting with family and friends over audio/video calls and text messages. However, people are not always available to answer calls. While on the other hand, smart speakers can offer assistance to people at any time of the day. From helping one find answers to puzzles or starting a conversation, smart speakers can do it all.
Besides small-sized speakers, human-sized autonomous robots have become a piece of interest in senior care. Such robots are trained to interact with humans and even address their issues. Many believe that by introducing AI robots into the lives of humans could significantly reduce loneliness and depression.
Till than game tablets for seniors seems to be the best alternative to AI-technologies. Senior-friendly tablets like Birdsong can function as a device for communication, talkback devices, as well as a companion in need.