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Cellphones and Seniors: A Guide to Buying New Technology

by Carissa Andrews  -  April 7th, 2014  Match Score:1

According to recent report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project, as few as 18% of seniors are using smartphones, despite growing popularity and trends. Only 39% of adults age 55-64 have them.

As a daughter of two Baby Boomers, I understand how hard it is for even the most willing older adults to latch on to the latest technology. Both of my parents have cellphones, and neither of them understands the ins and outs truly available, nor do they really care to. My mother typically leaves her cellphone in the glove compartment of her car, and though my dad needs his for work, he will always answer a text with a phone call.

So when it comes to buying cellphones to fit the needs of our senior loved ones, what is a good way to go? In my experience, it really comes down to the type of senior we are talking about. There's no point giving an iPhone to a senior who will only be using it from the roadside when they're in trouble. Trust me, I know. So the first thing you need to do is identify what type of senior we are talking about.

3 types of senior cellphone users:

Use in case of emergency only.

Just calls, please.

1. The ones who often times forget to turn them on (because they are saving battery life) or forget to charge them from the last time they turned them on.

2. The ones who are diligent with their cellphones, have them on hand, and turned on, but use them strictly for phone call usage and nothing more.

With this group, the idea is to know what they need. Is their eyesight impaired? If so, consider looking for cellphones with large buttons and a simple user interface like a Samsung Jitterbug (which has an old-school dial tone and acts much like a regular phone).

Tech-savvy seniors.

Anyway you look at it; cellphones can enhance our lives and the lives of the seniors we love. However, we need to take a few minutes to understand their needs before buying something they may or may not use.


Dangerous Business: Death by Selfies

by Carissa Andrews  -  October 13th, 2015  Match Score:1

by colourstudio.it, despositphotos.com
by colourstudio.it, despositphotos.com
In a world so overcome with their hidden desperation to be loved and accepted, it’s no wonder that bubbling to the surface is the need to please via selfies. As it turns out, the one-upmanship has escalated in recent years to the point of people doing the stupidest things for the sake of likes on their social media sites. So many people are enthralled with them, in fact, the word “selfie" was officially accepted by Merriam Webster for entrance into the dictionary last year. This is in and of itself a bit of a crazy feat, when you think of it. Last month Yahoo presented an article

It seems as though every year there’s a new trend happening in the world of selfies that tries to outrank the previous one. This year, the trend appears to be hashtag related to: #drivingselfie, #drivingselfies, and even #drivingtowork. Taking it up a notch, some adrenaline junkies take that up a notch, taking selfies (or having someone snap one for them) while they open a car door and hang halfway outside the moving vehicle. I kid you not. Let’s get something straight: distracted driving in general can be attributed to 12% of fatal crashes. This is something simple like texting while driving and takes only seconds. Now imagine how long it takes to unbuckle (presumably), leave your seat, open the car door, and hang outside your moving vehicle; then climb back in, close the door, re-buckle, and take the wheel. If this isn’t a recipe for complete disaster, I don’t know what is.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand the desire for a good picture. Sometimes, it’s not even tied to the desire for likes or for a rush of adrenaline – you just want to have a picture you’re proud of. However, studies are being conducted to determine whether or not selfies can actually be linked to narcissism or psychopathy. As of right now, findings are indicating there is a link between narcissism and selfies. However, this appears to be more so with men than women – since women are more prone to use social media for connecting and sharing; according to Gwendolyn Seidman

5 Tips To Stay Selfie Safe

Selfies aren’t going anywhere, but here are some common sense ways you can stay safe and have fun with them, too.

1. Stay Behind the Line

2. Learn To Climb

3. Vehicles Are For Driving

Upwards of 3,000 deaths are caused each year by distracted driving. Whether you’re texting, talking, or taking a photo, the few seconds it takes is enough to put lives at risk. "Taking a photo of yourself while you're driving a 2,000-pound vehicle down the road at 50 or 60 miles per hour? That is putting your life in danger and putting the lives of those around you in danger," Jackie Gillan, president of Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, told CNN

4. Watch What You’re Doing

Being in a new environment, and especially one with lots of people or strange surroundings can make even the most with-it person a bit disoriented. Match all that with a selfie obsession and you could find yourself in some serious trouble because you’ve lost your balance, gotten too close to an animal, or a train conductor’s foot. Just this year, a Japanese tourist died at the Taj Mahal after slipping down the steps taking a selfie at the Royal Gate, according to the BBC

5. When In Doubt, Wait

Whether or not you have the “perfect" selfie, life goes on and no one will think the less of you. If you feel you, or someone you love has Body Dysmorphic Disorder or a selfie addiction, please seek help. Cognitive behavioral therapy can be used to help patients recognize the reasoning for the compulsive behavior and how to manage or moderate it. For the rest of you, have fun and stay safe.


texting Obsession

by Liubov Edwards  -  November 19th, 2015  Match Score:1

Texting Obsession

More and more people are becoming very attached to their smartphones; they are browsing the internet, using social networks and texting. New findings show that obsessive excessive texting can lead to reduce academic performance in teenagers, especially girls. The research shows that teenage girls send and receive an average of 167 texts per day. This sort of communicating for social interaction is very distracting and engage in obsessive, preoccupied thinking, which makes the brain to stop receiving any academic information.

You may also like: Cellphones and Seniors: A Guide to Buying New Technology



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