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Old 01-15-2018, 02:02 PM   #1
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Question on phone apps

We just met a neighbor down here in AZ who lives about 1/4 mile from us. Nice old gal who was walking her dogs. She told us right up front that she has Alzhiemer's. When she left she started off in the wrong direction and looked confused. I asked her if she was headed home and pointed her in the right direction.


That got me to wondering if there is an app for a phone where you could enter her address and if she got turned around she could just open the app, hit a button and it would direct her to her home.


It would have to be a GPS app of some sort and easy enough where an elderly person could easily operate it. Ideally it would give her walking directions to her home just by opening the app with no buttons to push, no instructions to give, etc.


Anyone know of such an animal? Before you ask, I don't know if her phone is an Android or iPhone but I can find out the next time I see her, so fire away with names of apps for each make of phone.


Thanks,

GFC Mike
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Old 01-15-2018, 03:17 PM   #2
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Greetings,
Mr.GFC. One of the first "hits" on Google. Look for "take me home" app.

https://twitter.com/TakeMeHome_App

Probably more...
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Old 01-15-2018, 06:43 PM   #3
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RTF, I looked at that app and think it might work, but I want to play with it and make sure it's suitable for someone with dementia. It relies on Google Maps, which is not a bad thing, but GM needs too many input steps for someone with dementia.


Thanks a lot for that link.
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Old 01-15-2018, 07:37 PM   #4
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Anyone know of such an animal? Before you ask, I don't know if her phone is an Android or iPhone but I can find out the next time I see her, so fire away with names of apps for each make of phone.


Thanks,

GFC Mike[/QUOTE]



Great idea Mike. Not to be the downer on this idea but...

At some point the person would have to remember the app was on the phone and what icon to tap. It would work at times and for awhile at least. One more thing for medicine to solve

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Old 01-15-2018, 09:34 PM   #5
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Couldn’t you just ask Siri how do I get home?
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:14 AM   #6
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Jack, that's a good point, and at some time she's not going to be able to remember she has a phone, but at that time she shouldn't be going out for walks.


I thought what I would do if I like the app RTF suggested is arrange her apps on her screens so this icon would be by itself on the screen, and maybe duplicate the icon many times on that same screen and then make it her home screen.


Then, if she remembers how to turn on the phone it would come up with that home screen with only that icon on the screen.


almightys, that's a thought but with Androids and "Hey Google", you have to tap the Google icon then ask the question. I have no experience with iphones but it would be easy enough to see if that would work.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:19 AM   #7
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Maybe the only way this would work is if someone else would use the app. At least from my experience helping family with Alzheimer/Dementia.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:39 AM   #8
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From what I have seen, using the proposed app is probably beyond the capabilities of many those afflicted Alzheimer / dementia, even when still able to take a neighborhood walk. To be useful, it would have to be a very simple device that always points home, but couldn't point as the crow flies, but instead along a course, ideally the course that brought the person to where they are. It would have to omit all extraneous details, and in retracing the steps, it would have to omit having gone in circles. Still, it seems very doable, and it would be a great thing if someone actually produced it.
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Old 01-16-2018, 12:35 PM   #9
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iPhone w Siri will get you directions home. Tried it on my walk yesterday and leaving the find my iPhone on as well as a car tracker can help family members find you in case of emergency. Yet the challenge of using tech or even recognizing they were lost is the problem. We used to find my grandfather at the Canadian border at sault st Marie. We live near Detroit! Ugh that was a drive. Thank god he never started going south or he would have been in key west
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Old 01-16-2018, 10:24 PM   #10
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almightys that's an amazing story!


On another forum a member suggested an app called "Life360". It's an app you install on your phone and family members do it also. They can tell at any moment where your phone is and come get you.
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Old 01-17-2018, 08:38 AM   #11
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GFC, i've thought about this in another way. when you think about airports and you hear an announcement from TSA like "whoever left an iPhone (or tablet or whatever) at security checkpoint 3, please come and get it..."
it got me thinking; you can use photoshop or many different graphic tools to take a standard background photo for a phone, and simply add text that has a person's name and address right on the graphic you use as a background or "wallpaper". This way, even if the person is unconscious, you don't have to unlock the device, just wake it up and it will show you on the background who they are and where they live.
This might be good for the lady you met. i understand dementia can eventually even cause them to forget their own name and certainly their address or the code to unlock their phone, so if she was out walking, someone could at least help her get home.
I know some people will say this could be a security problem, but if she's walking in her own safe neighborhood... just a thought.
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Old 01-17-2018, 08:56 AM   #12
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From my personal experience with my now deceased father, many Alzheimer / dementia patients have good days and bad days at the beginning. On a good day, no problem. On a bad day they get confused and anxious but just continue to either walk or drive. Eventually it leads to locking the doors of the house from the inside unfortunately and ultimately to a locked unit in a nursing home. Many ideas above are good for a person in the right frame of mind on a good day. On the bad days the only option is to have a tracker on them so you can find them. It is a terrible disease and one I hope they find a cure for soon.
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Old 01-17-2018, 11:12 AM   #13
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Hamrow, thanks for that idea. I might make up a background that simply has her name and address and an emergency phone number on it, and make sure she doesn't have to unlock her phone with anything more than a swipe.


Our condo down here is in a senior community, very secure, so I wouldn't worry about any scum bag attacking her and stealing her phone. If a person with alzheimers wants to walk safely in their neighborhood, this is the perfect place to do it.


Allan, it certainly is a scary disease. It's like dealing with a small child who is big enough to get into a lot more precarious situations.
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