The heart beats approximately 115,000 times per day totaling to 42 million times in a year. Therefore, it's best practice to keep watch of your hardworking ticker. Notably, heart health is important for seniors because age comes with natural changes in body organs and their functionality ranging from the heart to blood vessels.
Seniors are more vulnerable to cardiovascular conditions such as heart attacks and heart failures than other people in the population. 47 million of the 86 million people diagnosed with cardiovascular disorders in America are above 60 years.
In line with this, tech developers are making new products like diagnostic chips and portable devices to maintain heart health in this population and detect issues early. While some heart health devices are made specifically for seniors, others are made for the general population but can offer significant benefits for seniors. Below is a list of high tech devices for tracking senior heart health.
iBeat is a smartwatch that prevents heart-related conditions by monitoring heart rate. It was designed to save lives and specifically reduce the hundred thousands who died of heart conditions annually. iBeat is great for cardiovascular disease prevention because it detects symptoms of heart attack and other cardiac problems.
iBeat offers immediate help when seniors need it most. It has an emergency button that can be pressed anytime, and your loved ones and 911 are notified immediately. The good thing about iBeat is that it has built-in cellular connectivity and, therefore, does not require phone or internet connectivity. It offers the family and friends of a senior peace of mind because they can check in remotely to see how the senior is fairing.
2. Holter Monitor
Holter monitor is a portable heart health device that measures and records a loved one's heart activity for 24 hours or longer if needed. It is battery-operated and resembles a small camera in size. You use the device by attaching it to the skin.
The good thing about this heart health device is that it is pain-free and risk-free. You can have it on at night, and it won't affect the quality of your sleep. Holter monitor can be used to determine if a senior's heartbeat is slow, fast, or irregular. Also, if a loved one has a pacemaker, Holter monitor can be utilized to determine if it is working optimally.
3. Zio Service
Zio Service is a small wireless parch that a loved one wears on the left chest to track heart rhythm for 2 weeks continuously to give insights into your heart health. Zio Service is among the innovations changing the detection and management of cardiovascular diseases. It can detect cardiac arrhythmias, or irregular heart rate.
Arrhythmia can be an early sign of a condition such as atrial fibrillation, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. The earlier arrhythmias are detected, the easier it is to manage. Failure to detect the condition in good time can result in severe complications.
4. Apple Watch
The Apple Watch monitors a senior's heart regularly all day. With Apple Watch, you can check your pulse rate and heart performance anytime anywhere. Apple Watch detects anything unusual with your heart health and alerts you. It identifies unusually low or high heart rates and irregular heart rhythms, and the smartwatch notifies you even if you don't feel the symptoms. You can consult with your doctor early enough before the symptoms escalate.
Notably, Apple Watch has an emergency button that allows you to ask for help when you need it. When you press the button, emergency services and your emergency contacts are notified immediately. Indeed, the Apple Watch is built with your heart in mind. In addition to monitoring your heart rate, Apple Watch tracks activity, blood pressure, and sleep, giving your loved one insight into their activity level.
Fitbit is a prominent brand for fitness wearables. It acknowledges that your heart is the center of everything you do and the need to track it. Fitbit offers numerous devices to track your heart rate from your wrist.
Fitbit Charge 2, for example, has a built-in heart monitor that shows a senior's heart rate. It monitors the loved one's heart rate regardless of the activity they are engaging in—sitting, going for a walk, or performing a workout. Apart from heart rate, Fitbit has features to track activity and sleep duration.
6. BodyGuardian Heart
Although not specifically made for seniors, BodyGuardian Health is a wearable with immense heart health benefits. You simply stick it on your skin, and it will monitor your heart rate in addition to activity rate, respiration, and other vital signs. The good thing with this heart health device is that it connects to an app and the senior, their physician, and their caregivers have access to it. These parties get alerts in case of an emergency.
At times, a senior needs more than a wearable heart health device. An implantable heart health device becomes a viable option. For rhythm control, a senior may get an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) or a pacemaker. ICD is positioned in the heart tissue to monitor the heart rate. It helps to restore the normal heart rhythm and prevent sudden cardiac death.
A senior may also get a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) to support the heart and help with circulation. When a senior's heart beats too fast or slow or irregularly, they may need a pacemaker. A pacemaker is a device that is powered by a battery and is implanted in the chest. It helps the heart have a normal rhythm and rate. When a loved one's heart can't work effectively, an LVAD assists the heart pump blood effectively.
There are numerous heart health devices in the market today as medical technology advances. While some devices are strictly for heart health, others have features to monitor activity, sleep, blood pressure, respiration, among others. The bottom line is to choose a device that meets a loved one's needs and is easy to use. Also, you can consult with a physician before use so that they can examine data as it arises.
For more information about heart health, check out our resource: Warning Signs of a Stroke.