ElderApps for Nursing Home Residents

I recently saw a video showing a 99-year old woman reading and composing poetry on her new iPad, which brightened and enlarged the typeface enough that she could read again despite limited vision due to glaucoma. It got me thinking about apps our elders could use in the nursing home and upon discharge. Please add your ElderApp suggestions in the comments section.

  • Kindle, for a treasure trove of books
  • A Diabetes app (there are many), to track blood sugar and help plan meals upon discharge
  • A Medication Tracker
  • Pandora, for instant access to favorite music (for inspiration in Rehab, or to drown out the buzzers and overhead pages)
  • Games, to keep the mind sharp and to play while waiting for all the things residents have to wait for
  • A Voice Memo Recorder, to easily capture thoughts before they escape
  • The 12 Step Companion, which includes the Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book and a meeting locator, to keep close to your program until all nursing home host AA meetings (for more on this, see Why Every Nursing Home Should Host AA Meetings)

2 thoughts on “ElderApps for Nursing Home Residents”

  1. Dr. El,

    As a Therapeutic Recreation Director in a nursing home and proud owner of both an iTouch and iPad, I would like to suggest some apps that I think would be of interest to some seniors, many of which can be purchased for the iPad, iPhone or ITouch. Please note, however, apps made specifically for the iPhone or iTouch may not always be viewed larger on the larger screen of the iPad. (In other words, you may see an app the actual size of the iPhone on your big,beautiful iPad screen.)

    -Scrabble – the classic game, no Scrabble lover should be without!
    -Solitaire – your favorite classic solitaire games (and variations) and you never have to worry about finding a full deck. Heck, the iPhone/iTouch is smaller than a full deck and you can do so much more!
    -Soduko – no more looking for a pencil, you can pencil your numbers right in. Confident in your Soduko abilities? Use the pen feature.
    -Trivia Games – a host of trivia games are available, most of them have free or trial versions, try them all and see which ones you like. My residents absolutely love the app "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire."
    -Kaleidoscope – young, old, somewhere in between, I love this app, it is awesome!

    If any readers have been on the fence over which Apple product to purchase, I would just like to point out that while they are all great, the size of the iPad for many people is a huge plus. I would also like to add, there is a feature on all three, the plus sign near the address bar. When clicked on, it creates an icon of the web page you are looking at and places it in your home page. Instead of typing in mybetternursinghome.blogspot.com each time you want to read Dr. El, just tap the + sign and now she is just 1 click away.

  2. Great additions, Sue. I didn't know about the + sign to add an icon — thanks for that tip. I'm certain we'll see an increasing number of residents bringing their own technology into the nursing home. I agree about the iPad being a more usable product for elders due to its size, and it will easily fit into the locked drawer provided by the nursing home, in case folks are worried about its safety. I just read that soon there will be a Skype app for iPad, so family members can video call their relatives using the iPad.


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