Smart Home Devices for People with Disabilities
By Space Coast Daily // October 23, 2019
People with disabilities have enough to worry about already, and making your home accessible is the solution to sustain independence and freedom to live better lives.
In the past, this might have been impossible but now, with the development of innovative technologies, a real accessible home for people with disabilities is easy to achieve.
Nowadays, you do not even have to limit yourself to getting a disability-specific specialized device to perform only one task. Today, thanks to a smartphone and the Internet of Things, you can find whatever you might think of to completely transform your living environment.
As in the case of many new technologies, smart home devices can be quite expensive.
The good news, however, is that we have integrated systems such as Amazon Alexa which allow you to extend your smart home abilities one bit at a time, and you can start with what you need the most.
A smart lock
In case you need to give nurses, therapists, personal care attendants, or your housekeeper access to your home, this device can help you a great deal. Also, it is much safer than a keypad which does not tell you when, if, and by whom it has been used.
It is also very complicated to change the combination, which can easily be passed to someone else who might have harmful intentions.
With a smart lock, you can use your smartphone as a key. You also have the option to give users guest, admin, temporary access, and even to restrict the times and days they can access your home.
Moreover, the applications keep logs of who entered your home and when. This way, you can always know if your home health or your kids arrived on time. If you want to restrict someone’s access to your house, you can do so within seconds.
If you have to stay in bed most of the time because of a disability or a chronic illness, a smart doorbell can be very helpful. It can help you even if you can move around but cannot see your front windows from the wheelchair.
A smart doorbell usually has a motion sensor camera which shows who it is at the door. That way, you have the option to answer or not. Surely, even individuals without disabilities might like to use such a device from time to time.
Anyone can say that at some point in their lives they woke up into the middle of the night due to feeling freezing cold or boiling hot. In a situation like this, you would normally get out of bed and adjust the thermostat accordingly.
However, if getting out of bed is very painful or even impossible, a smart thermostat is the best choice. With such a device, you only need to use your smartphone in order to set the temperature you feel most comfortable with. There are models that allow you to set it remotely.
So, if you are out looking for folding wheelchairs for travelling, which is another smart thing to have, you can turn down the heat to save energy.
Your home is your shelter and you need to feel as comfortable as possible in it. Such a device can make that possible.
Smart garage door opener
Losing garage door openers is very easy and the button may be difficult to press, especially if your hand strength is limited. However, with a smart garage door opener, you have the possibility to open your garage door from anywhere.
You need to be careful when selecting the smart add-on and make sure that it is compatible with the existing garage door opener.
Why smart home devices?
As we mentioned earlier, your home is your shelter. You need to always feel comfortable there. Smart home units enable individuals with disabilities to live more independent lives.
They provide us with control over our environment and with the freedom to make choices that able-bodied people usually take for granted.
Even though a smart home might be expensive, constantly having to pay caretakers and assistants to do things for you might translate into a similar sum of money.
Also, members of disability insurance programs like NDIS may charge their NDIS funds for these smart home devices for as long as it is a piece of proper equipment relevant to their condition.