What gadgets help with memory loss?
Whether you’re regularly struggling to remember all sorts of things, or just need a bit of help occasionally, we’ve found 10 top products that could make a big difference
If you’re having trouble remembering things, it could be time to start taking advantage of all the gadgets and equipment currently available which can provide prompts and reminders and generally make your life a bit easier. Some of them are slightly ‘techier’ than others, so you’ll need to decide whether they’ll be of any use to you. But whether you want to explore the wide range of apps available or just want a way to remember your keys, there should be something to suit you here
Given that many people are rarely without their mobile phone or tablet, setting up a reminder app on one or both of them can be a useful way to help you remember important things. If you find pictures are better memory joggers than words, try Evernote (free), which not only lets you set reminders which will pop up when you need them to, but allows you to take photos or screengrabs of things and fix an alarm reminder to them. If you struggle to remember people’s names, an app called Knome (free) helps you set up profiles for people you meet, including pictures and explanations of how you know them.
Putting up a noticeboard in an obvious spot in your house can act as a trigger for memories. You could put it in the kitchen or by the front door to remind you to do things or take things with you if you leave the house. Noticeboards can also be useful for putting up a daily plan or a list of activities that you might want to do. Magnetic whiteboards are good because you can fix paper to them, write on them and wipe clean.
3. Pill dispensers
If you need to take regular medication but have trouble remembering when you last took it, a dispenser with built-in alarm is a good idea. Pills can be divided up into days, morning and evening and fitted into their own compartments. An alarm will sound when you need to take your pills. Some dispensers are very high-tech and can be programmed to only release the set number of pills each time, locking away the rest of them until they’re needed. Blister packs can also be filled by the local chemist.
4. Sticky notes and labels
Whether it’s a post-it by the front door or labels on the cupboards, everybody relies on a certain amount of notes and labels to help them remember. It can make life a lot smoother and easier if you know exactly where you keep certain items by putting labels up. So whether it’s a note to remind you to put the bins out before you go to bed, or a sign to remind you where you keep your keys, they can be very useful if your memory isn’t as good as it used to be.
5. Calendars and diaries
Keep track of appointments and events with a calendar or diary. You can opt for a large one to fix on the wall, or go digital and use one that is either already available or can be installed onto a phone or tablet.
6. Alarm clocks
Most people need some kind of alarm in the morning, but alarm clocks can also be used to remind you of appointments or events, or as a trigger to remind you that you need to take a pill or eat something.
7. Motion sensor reminders
Often located near to doors, a motion sensor reminder will play a recorded message to prompt you to do or remember something. It could be remembering to close and lock all the windows, or check you’ve turned the oven off.
8. Locator devices
Keep losing your keys or glasses? You can attach special key rings to items which contain a tracking device that will beep if you press the corresponding colour-coded button on a base handset.
9. Talking memo pens or watches
Ideal for helping you to remember short shopping lists or a friend’s phone number, memo watches let you record verbal messages, which means you can make a note of important bits of information and play them back when you need them. A talking memo pen acts in the same way.
10. GPS route finders
If you haven’t got much of a head for remembering routes, or aren’t confident finding your way to a new destination, a GPS route finder could be the ideal solution. It will pick out the best way to get somewhere, and you can often program in specific requests, such as a route which lets you avoid a certain area or particular road.
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