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Potential Disadvantages of Technology with Medical Alert Systems

If you are looking around for a medical alert system, you probably already know about the ways that medical alert systems can improve your life. However, there are always disadvantages of technology that you may not think about beforehand. 

The following are issues or complications that you may run into concerning the senior’s safety you are trying to improve with a medical alert system purchase. 

Busy phone lines

What happens if you forget to hang-up your home phone or if the phone is left off the hook? Will your medical alert system still work properly?

In most cases, if you have left your phone off the hook, medical alert systems will be able to disconnect the previous call. The system would be able to call out to the monitoring service in the case that you have to press your emergency button for help.

If this is a common issue that you run into or something you are highly concerned about, this may be the best option for you. You also have the option of getting a mobile or cellular in-home medical alert system. Using a system based on cellular will eliminate the potential issue altogether.

Phone connectivity

If you have an in-home medical alert system set up through your landline, there is a chance that your system could become disconnected from the phone line. If your medical alert system disconnects from your landline, it will not work properly.

Disconnection could easily happen if the line is pulled out of the jack or disconnected from the medical alert system. If this happens, the connection is lost and no emergency calls can be made, and a serious risk is created. In order to prevent this, it is crucial to make sure that the line connecting your medical alert system and phone line are located in a place that can not be easily tampered with on accident or on purpose.

If you find your phone line to be unreliable, it is important that you go with the cellular option in order to make sure that your device can help you in an emergency. A cellular home-based medical alert system works the exact same as a landline medical alert system, with the only difference being that the base uses a cellular network instead of a  phone line connection.

Weak battery life

All types of electronics and technology have a battery life. This is a common concern when people are researching any device they are considering. The battery life of in-home systems and mobile devices can vary quite drastically.

If you have an in-home medical alert system, the battery life for the emergency button typically lasts about 10 years. While this is a long battery life, the time can raise concerns about knowing when it is time to change the battery. As an extra precaution, most medical alert systems will send a notification to the monitoring service when the battery is due to be replaced. Most monitoring services will also provide you with a replacement battery free of charge.

When it comes to mobile medical alert systems, the battery life varies based on the device. Make sure that you read your manual or ask what to expect when purchasing. Most mobile medical alert devices last one to five days before needing a charge, but it is good practice to get in a routine and charge your device on your nightstand each night while you sleep. In addition, most mobile devices will notify you when it is time to charge the battery.

Inconvenient malfunctions

Medical alert systems greatly improve the life of people who use them, but nothing is foolproof. Just like any other electronic device, your medical alert system could malfunction.

In order to prevent this from happening, you can reach out to the medical alert system company for assistance prior to use. This will prevent any worry during unforeseen emergency situations. They can send regular alerts to your device to make sure that everything is working properly and that there are no issues that could hinder the use of your device. When they alert your device and they do not receive a response from you, they will reach out to you to help figure out what the issue is.

If it turns out that your medical alert system has malfunctioned, they should be able to send you a new system free of charge, or at least be able to work with you on what needs to be done to get the device working properly again.

Fall detection

A common concern surrounding medical alert systems is the unknown of what happens in the event that you are not able to press your emergency button, or if you have fallen and/or are unconscious. As this is a common occurrence, most devices have features that help prevent this scenario.

When you are picking the right medical alert system for yourself, it is important that you review the most helpful features available. One essential feature that can help you, if you are not able to press your emergency button, is fall detection. This feature is one of the newer options and is offered on both in-home and mobile systems. The fall detection feature is able to detect a sudden change in height or an impact, followed by no movement. This means if you fall, are unconscious, and/or hit your head, the system will be able to detect the emergency and call for help, without you pressing your emergency button.

Finding the right medical alert system and understanding the features and potential issues can seem like an overwhelming task in the beginning. However, with the right help, it can be a simple process that will significantly improve your safety.

Hannah Verret
Hannah Verret is a Content Developer at Med-Alert Pros in Memphis, TN. Hannah has been working in content creation throughout her entire adult career. When Hannah isn't writing or organizing social media posts, she's spending her time reading and loving on her many pets.

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