World Wide Web Day – Technology for Seniors

seniors and technology

World Wide Web Day is almost here, and Seasons Retirement is preparing to celebrate with its residents. 

World Wide Web Day (also known as WWWD) is the perfect time for people of all ages, including older adults, to spend familiarizing themselves with the latest technology.

However, the team at Seasons Retirement doesn’t need a special occasion to recognize the importance of technology as it relates to modern life. Stephanie Sanborn, along with several other members of the Seasons Retirement team, are constantly looking for new, innovative ways to integrate technology into our services and processes.

Continue reading for a brief overview of World Wide Web Day, and learn how Season’s initiatives regarding technology for older individuals can improve the quality of your loved one’s residency.


What is World Wide Web Day, and why is it important?

World Wide Web Day is celebrated annually by tech enthusiasts across the globe. Observed on August 1st, the holiday marks the date people were first allowed to use the internet and honours our ability to access information freely. 

World Wide Web Day is the perfect time for older adults to spend time with their family members and celebrate the ways that the internet and technology, as a whole, have impacted our day-to-day lives.

Many older adults most likely remember when they had to comb through their personal book collections or visit their local library to find the answer to a question. Thankfully nowadays, people can access all the information they need at the click of a few buttons and keys. 

Modern technology has also made communicating with friends and family significantly more accessible and less expensive. Older adults can use their smartphones or online meeting platforms to voice/video chat with anyone, anywhere, at any time.

With all of this in mind, it’s easy to see why World Wide Web Day is worth celebrating!


Reasons why older adults struggle with modern technology

The time you were born can significantly impact your comfort level with modern technology. Many younger people who grew up with computers, smartphones, tablets, etc., see them as everyday tools. 

Understandably, some older adults who didn’t have access to technology at a formative age may not feel as comfortable using said technology.

Additionally, some older adults suffer from health-related ailments that make them less inclined to integrate modern technology into their everyday routines. Some of the health-related issues that can prevent older ones from effectively using technology include the following:

  • Visual impairments (9% of older adults over the age of 75)
  • Severe hearing limitations (18% of older adults over the age of 75)
  • Conditions that impact reading ability (23% of older adults over the age of 75)

Additionally, a 2014 survey by the Pew Research Centre found that roughly 77% of older adults stated that they would “require assistance” using a smartphone or tablet. The same survey also found that 56% of online older adults (who don’t have social media) need help using technology to communicate with others.

If your loved one has been on the fence about employing modern technology, it could be related to their health or current comfort levels. You can help your loved ones familiarize themselves with the latest gadgets by spending an hour or two each day showing them how they work and answering their questions. 

Additionally, if your loved one is considering transitioning into a retirement community, you should look for a location that integrates innovative technology into its services.


How does Seasons Retirement utilize modern technology for seniors?

Many modern retirement communities use technology to improve their residents’ quality of life. However, we go above and beyond at Seasons Retirement when integrating modern technology into our services.

Stephanie Sanborn, Director of Innovation and Education, is a valued team member specializing in senior technology programs.

Here’s how Sanborn described her role in one of our previous blog posts:

“…I focus on building strategic partnerships with academic institutions influencing age-related research and work to expand knowledge around the rewarding career paths within our sector. 

I also work to expand technology-based learning modalities for staff to reinforce our values and culture and give them a deeper understanding of providing person-centred care to our residents, such as a virtual reality 360-degree dementia training experience.”

One of Sanborn’s partnerships is with a group called Social Robots. Social Robots is a company that designs and manufactures miniature robots used to “engage, entertain and educate” older adults.

Seasons Retirement also utilizes cutting-edge VR technology for seniors. Seasons recently used VR technology to garner a better understanding of dementia and how to accommodate residents with the condition more effectively. 

Season’s four-minute virtual simulation gives the viewer a 360-degree scope of how it feels to go through the “morning care” process as an older adult with dementia. After sharing the pilot with 150 team members in Alberta and Ontario, they felt they better understood the modifications they needed to make to the morning care routine, like slowing down during the process, offering an empathetic approach, etc.


Seniors and technology — What are the benefits?

Although it may not seem like it at first glance, consistently using technology is incredibly beneficial for older adults.

A 2016 study from the National Library of Medicine shows that using social technology can be beneficial for older adults in the following ways:

  • Better self-rated health
  • Improved mental health
  • Lower risk of chronic illness
  • Improved subjective well being
  • More opportunities to connect with others, reducing the risk of loneliness/depression


Contact your local Seasons Retirement Community to learn more. 

There comes a time in many older adults’ lives when they feel that it’s best to transition from their current home to a retirement community. However, if your loved one enjoys using technology to stay connected, they may not feel comfortable transitioning.

Thankfully for you and your loved one, the team at Seasons Retirement values the importance of innovative technology in modern life, especially for older adults.

Contact a nearby Seasons Retirement location today to learn how we’ve integrated modern technology into our everyday services.

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