Type: Process Essays
Sample donated: Maxine Bowen
Last updated: July 26, 2019
The Challenge Researchers have shown that the quality of life of Alzheimer’s patients can be improved through the use of photographs and music. Family photographs and favorite music can be played on iPads and Tablets, which are examples of mobile health technologies.
The question that arises is how AD patients can manage using mobile health technology considering the nature of their disease. AD, being a neurodegenerative disease interferes with the behavior of an individual and may present with symptoms such as withdrawal from the society and family, difficulties in managing self-care, loss of motivation, mood swings, disorientation, and problems with language use. Therefore, the challenges that are posted in this case is, “how can mobile health technologies be used to improve the quality of life of patients with Alzheimer’s disease?” This topic is chosen since understanding it will help in improving the life of Alzheimer’s patients, who go through a lot of miserable experiences in their day to day lives. BackgroundMobile health is considered as a part of the electronic health services by using the mobile phone and personal digital assistants. There are easy to use, provide accurate results, and are cost-effective. Since individuals have become more comfortable with using technology, there are a lot of applications have been developed for managing patients with chronic and severe diseases. Approximately 5.2 millions of Alzheimer’s patients are 65 and older.
In most cases, elderly will not expose an individual to life-threatening conditions, but rather, it leads to deterioration of their cognitive ability, which makes them be more dependent on assisted living technologies as Jean stated in her article (Jean et al., 2013). Yamagata et al. (2013) also attested that photographs and music plays a pivotal role in helping people who have been diagnosed with different levels of the AD. Clinicians and family members can use iPods, iPads, and Tables to play music or display favorite photographs to AD patients as a way of enhancing their experiences (Yamagata et al., 2013). Pereira et al.
(2015) also showed that use of mobile health applications can benefit the delivery of health services, including to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease patients significantly. Results Different studies have been carried in determining the impact of using m-health applications on the quality of life of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Jean et al. (2013) carried out an investigation to determine the impact of technology on the quality of life of people who had been diagnosed with dementia. The study was inspired by previous research, which had shown that technology and applications such as iPods, iPads, and Tablets played a pivotal role in stimulating dementia patients. Therefore, Jean et al. (2013) are interested in understanding how the mainstream technologies (which are not specifically designed for health or medical use) can help in improving the quality of life of dementia patients. The researchers also believe and investigate the capacity of assistive technologies as well as specialty created device in helping alleviate the symptoms of patients who are diagnosed with dementia (Jean et al.
, 2013). An essential finding of this investigation shows that assistive and other technological applications can be used to improve the quality of life of people who are diagnosed with dementia. However, such technologies need to be customized so that they can effectively meet the needs of patients. Although the study conducted by David and Rafiullah (2017) does not relate to dementia directly, it provides valuable insights into the impact of using the mobile applications in healthcare delivery. The researchers believe that the robust advances in telecommunication technology and the growth in mobile phone and related technologies can improve the quality of healthcare delivery to patients significantly (David & Rafiullah, 2017). There are a broad variety of health care practices such as supporting, monitoring, treatment, diagnosis, health promotion, as well disease prevention that can be achieved through the application of mobile technologies. The researchers are motivated to carry out this investigation since they believe that previous studies carried out on this topic have been presenting mixed results. They conducted a systematic literature review in which they identified a positive correlation between improved patient outcomes and the use of mobile phone technologies in 88 percent of the studies (David & Rafiullah, 2017).
They agree with previous findings including Jean et al. (2013) that customization of the technologies and user-friendliness of the technologies play a significant role in improving compliance as well as enhancing the positive patient experiences. Discussion The appalling experiences that Alzheimer’s disease patients and their families go through was the trigger to carrying out an investigation in this area. The inspiration for conducting this investigation is that it can help in collecting enough data to be used in guiding evidence-based practice in improving the quality of life of dementia patients. The different articles that have been used in this investigation and others provide vital information on the ways the quality of care can be improved. Most of the investigations agree that the use of mobile health technologies and applications is one of the means that can help patients to relieve psychological, emotional, mental, as well as physical difficulties. Understanding how to improve the quality of life of Alzheimer’s disease patient is an essential thing in healthcare given that there is no known cure for the condition. Therefore, findings way of helping the patients live a quality life with the condition is a captivating thing.
The similarity of the two articles reviewed in the above section is that they all agree about the impact of mobile applications on the quality of life. The key difference is that David and Rafiullah (2017) conduct the investigation in regards to diabetes while Jean et al. (2013) focus on dementia. Yamagata et al. (2013) also explore the same topic as Jean et al. (2013).
One of the key challenges that have been observed in this investigation is that although mobile technologies and other assistive technologies can help improve the quality of life of patients, they may not be effective in most cases. This is mainly due to the physical, mental, psychological, and emotional conditions of the patients. Therefore, as the studies have shown, customizing the applications to meet the specific needs of the patients in regards to their conditions can help improve their effectiveness. Moreover, one of the problems that Alzheimer’s patients suffer from is getting lost outside, and they might encounter stealing or hitting that may affect them emotionally and physically. Trying to engage family members in the whole treatment process by tracking patients through GPS applications.
We can install GPS detector on small devices that patients cannot remove, for instance, watch, necklace, or ring and then will be connected to family members phones, which could avoid this situation from happening.Conclusion Alzheimer’s disease is not curable. However, there are drugs and other prescriptions that can help reduce the symptoms of the condition.
What is important when a person is diagnosed with the condition is how to manage it to improve the quality of life. Many researchers have established that the use of mobile technology and applications such as iPods, and tablets can help in improving the quality of life of Alzheimer’s patients. However, there is a need to customize the applications in such a way that meets the specific requirements of the patients, which are brought about by their health conditions.
Studying more about AD and it’s progression of the disease, allows for program applications in an effective way to fit on patients needs. Designing mobile health applications to help elderly reduced their chances to develop dementia and Alzheimer’s, to illustrate, performing some brain exercises like memory and solving problem games.