Counselor's Corner, February 2017

Catherine Findley, CJFS Cyber Seniors

Making Life a Little Easier with Apps

by Catherine Findley, LCSW

I am a firm believer in the power of technology to change lives and empower people. This is one reason I led the charge in launching the CJFS Cyber Seniors program, which is currently in its second round of empowering older folks to learn to use technology. Smart phones and tablets can provide any number of tools to make life easier – and they can help seniors stay connected to friends and loved ones.

Below is a list of apps that may be especially helpful to seniors. Many are free, and most are under $3.

1. EyeReader or Magnifying Glass with Light - Transforms your smartphone camera into a magnifying glass with a light.

2. Pillboxie - Virtual pill boxes enable you to set reminders for taking your medication.

3. Park 'n' Forget - Helps you remember where you parked your car and even monitors the amount of time spent in metered parking spots.

4. Birthday Sweet - Calendar designed specifically to remind you when your loved-ones were born.

5. My Medical - In an emergency, having your medical history handy can be a literal life-saver. This app can store and track medical records, doctor's appointments, test results and vital signs for you and your family, all in one place. Medical histories can then easily be transmitted to a healthcare provider.

6. Voice Reading or Speaky - Apps that reads text aloud from the Internet, emails, messages and other text files. 

7. The Weather Channel - Get constant updates on the day's weather and what to expect in the forecast. Mobile alerts inform you of severe weather. 

8. Skype or FaceTime - Enjoy video conderencing with far away friends and family.

9. Yesterday USA - This is an Internet radio station that plays music and popular show from the '20s, '30s, '40s and '50s. Great for listeners who are nostalgic for the sound of the old days.

10. Uber or Lyft - Schedule rides when YOU want to go, communicating directly with the driver and without a need for carrying cash.

11. Shipt - Order groceries online, pay online and have them delivered to your door. NOTE: there is a slight upcharge on items.

12. Fitbit - Works with the wearable device that is purchased separately. Use it to track your steps, heart rate, and your sleep patterns. It will even send you a reminder when it's time to get some exercise.

If you’d like to be notified of our next Cyber Seniors class, please contact Catherine Findley, catherine@cjfsbham.org or 205-879-3438.