Elderly Camera Monitor: Pros and Cons of Granny Cams for Family Caregiver Peace of Mind

November 22, 2023

An Elderly Camera Monitor is a popular consideration for overwhelmed caregivers  worried about their elderly loved ones. With the advancement of internet enabled technology for senior care, it has become easier to check the safety and well-being of our elderly parents, even from a distance. However, like any other device, there are pros and cons to using an Elderly Camera Monitor. In this blog post, we will explore the advantages and disadvantages of relying solely on a camera to monitor your senior parent and discuss better options, like using cameras as a supplement to a remote elderly monitoring system.

It’s important to note, however, that any senior technology, including camera monitors, are not a replacement for human interaction. Social isolation is a real health issue, so while cameras provide us with a visual connection, they shouldn’t replace the emotional and human support that loved ones need.

Pros of Using a Camera Monitor for Your Senior Loved Ones

One of the greatest advantages of using a camera monitor in your senior loved one’s home is the ability to “see” them from anywhere. Sometimes called a Nanny Cam or Granny Cam, you can get a visual check in on your older adult with just a few taps on your smartphone or computer. This convenience allows you to check on their safety and well-being even when you are not physically present.

A camera monitor provides a real-time video feed, giving you a clear picture of what your senior loved ones are doing and how they are faring. This visual connection can provide peace of mind, especially if you live far away or have a busy schedule that prevents you from visiting as often as you would like. Seeing your parents or loved ones on the screen, safely going about their daily routines, can ease your worries and reduce stress levels.

Furthermore, a camera monitor can serve as a valuable tool for remote caregiving. If you live in a different city or even a different country, it can be challenging to actively participate in your loved one’s care. However, with a camera monitor, you can still play an active role by remotely monitoring their daily activities, medication reminders, and overall safety. This can help you feel more involved.

Where legal, a Granny Cam camera monitor can provide evidence in case of an emergency or accident. If something were to happen to your loved ones while they are alone at home, you can review the recorded footage and provide accurate information to medical professionals or emergency responders. This can save valuable time and potentially make a difference in the outcome.

Overall, a camera monitor installed in your older adult’s living space offers convenience, peace of mind, and the ability to remotely participate in their care. It can help bridge the physical distance and keep you connected to your parents or relatives, ensuring their safety and well-being. However, it is important to remember that a camera monitor should not replace human interaction and care. It is simply a tool to supplement and enhance the caregiving process.

Cons and Limitations of Relying on a Camera Monitor

While a Granny Cam camera elderly monitoring system can be a useful tool for checking in on your senior loved ones, it is important to recognize the cons and limitations of relying on this technology. There are three important disadvantages to consider: the practicality of watching the camera feed 24/7, knowing when to access the camera, and lastly, the moral, ethical, and legal considerations of cameras and recording in the home.

One of the main limitations is that a camera by itself is not very useful – from a practical point of view, who has time to watch the camera feed for hours on end, waiting for something to happen? Unlike a remote monitoring system for elderly, which uses motion sensors to alert a caregiver when a loved one may be at risk, a camera can only capture what is happening right in front of it. If a safety incident were to occur while the caregiver is not actively watching the feed, for example while you’re at work, sleeping or driving, you are likely to miss it entirely. A caregiver should question the practicality of a camera as a sole caregiving technology device.

Another limitation of relying solely on a Granny Cam camera monitor is that it does not have the capability to alert you when a loved one may be at risk. While you can check in on your loved ones through the video feed, you don’t necessarily know WHEN to actually check. There are motion sensing indoor cameras available, however, motion itself is not a good proxy for an emergency situation. For example, installing a camera in a bathroom or bedroom, where many safety emergencies occur, is fraught with privacy, moral, and ethical considerations.

Speaking of which, privacy is a very important concern when relying solely on a camera monitor for senior care. While most caregivers have the best of intentions using a camera monitor is to ensure the safety and well-being of loved ones, many older adults understandably object to their use in their homes. Constant surveillance can undermine the confidence older adults need to exercise the good judgment necessary to age in place safely. Before installing a Granny Cam or elderly camera monitor, it’s important to check state laws on surveillance in the home or in assisted living facilities. Some states require a resident’s consent for viewing and/or recording. Adding to the complication are states where consent of paid caregivers in the home may be required. Also, there have been reports of hackers breaking into camera feeds, which presents a privacy concern on a whole new level.

The Best of Both Worlds for Family Caregivers and Older Adults: Using a Camera to Supplement to a Full Featured Elderly Monitoring System

Relying solely on a camera to monitor a loved has significant limitations – watching the camera feed all the time is impractical, a caregiver doesn’t know at what moment is best to turn on the camera feed, and privacy, ethical, moral, and legal considerations – which is why starting with a remote elderly monitoring system is the best solution.

For example, envoyatHome is an elderly remote monitor that immediately notifies a caregiver when their loved one’s safety or wellness may be at risk. Monitoring for safety, wellness, cognitive concerns, and compliance risks 24/7, envoyatHome immediately alerts a caregiver for over 35 risky behaviors that families care about. Full featured aging in place technology for seniors has never been more affordable or easier to use.

Based on passive smart home for seniors technology, envoyatHome asks nothing of the older adult under care. There are no wearables to lose, charge, or forget to put on and no buttons to push. Passive means the older adult just goes about their day normally, and if there is an unusual behavior – night wandering, elopement, day night confusion, behaviors synonymous with insomnia, anxiety, a UTI, or dehydration, or the older adult is in the bathroom too long, doesn’t start or finish their day as expected, or doesn’t traverse the stairs safely – envoyatHome sends an immediate text or voice alert to the family caregiver’s cell phone. At this point the family caregiver might choose to quickly intervene, or they may choose to turn on their remote camera to visually assess the situation.

By supplementing the camera with a fully featured elderly remote monitor, a caregiver can address the older adult’s privacy concerns arising from unwanted surveillance. The best of both worlds is senior technology that gives a family caregiver peace of mind with privacy, dignity, and respect for the autonomy of an older adult aging in place.

About envoyatHome

envoyatHome is committed to caregivers of older adults aging in place. Featured in Kiplinger, Fortune, National Council on Aging, and aginginplace.org, envoyatHome is a solution for caregivers that delivers full time, affordable senior care for the digital age. You can reach us at info@envoyathome.com or 856.681.0076.

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