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Can you get a fall alarm linked to a mobile phone?

Discover the peace of mind provided by a monitored fall alarm system, ensuring safety for your elderly loved ones.

June 21, 2023

Elderly woman fell on the floor

A fall alarm can be an ideal solution for a family concerned about an elderly loved one who lives independently. Around one in three people over the age of 65 experience at least one fall a year. The consequences of a fall at home or in the garden, especially if help cannot be reached straight away, can be serious.

This is the reason why many people look for elderly fall alert systems that will notify loved ones straight away if the wearer has a hard fall.

In this article, we look at fall alarms and the pros and cons of having a fall alarm that is linked to the mobile phone of a family member or friend.

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Why fall alarms can be useful

With falls being so common in older adults, having a fall alarm system in place can bring real peace of mind for the wearer and their loved ones, especially if they live alone or spend lots of time on their own.

When an elderly person has a fall, they might not be able to reach a phone, and if no one is home to hear them call for help, it might be some time before they are discovered if they are unable to get up on their own. Having a simple alarm device that is always worn and that detects falls automatically, as well as having an emergency button to press, can be a great way to ensure that help is always within reach, even if the person who has fallen is unable to speak or move.

Having this kind of system can help older people, whether they have a history of falls or are simply feeling more frail or at risk as they age, to live independently with confidence.

You might be interested in this article on whether a mobile phone or a personal alarm are the best option in an emergency.

Should you choose a fall alarm linked to mobile phone in the UK?

There are fall alarms on the market in the UK that can link directly to the mobile phone of a loved one, so that particular individual gets an alert if the alarm goes off.

This can seem like a good solution for families that want a designated contact to be alerted if there is a problem, because the notification should happen straight away, so they know something is happening.

However, there are several potential issues with relying on a system that directly links up with a friend or family member.

  • If the designated contact is busy, driving or working at the time, they might miss the alert that their elderly loved one has had a fall, potentially not seeing the alert for several hours afterward. This could cause a significant delay if urgent help is needed for the person who has fallen.
  • If the alert happens in the middle of the night, when the designated contact is asleep, they may not wake up when they receive it, which could cause a considerable delay to arranging help for the person that has fallen.
  • If the designated contact changes their number at any point, the setup with the fall alarm also needs to be updated straight away to ensure the contact details are correct and the right number will receive the alert.
  • If the faller is unable to reach a phone, they won’t be able to speak to the loved one who has been alerted until someone arrives with them in person. This can cause additional distress and worry on all sides.
  • If the designated contact does get the alert and knows that their loved one has had a fall, they need to make a decision on what to do next. They might not feel confident in knowing what to do in this kind of situation, especially if they can’t just leave whatever they are doing and quickly reach their elderly loved one in person.
  • If the mobile phone that is set up to receive the alert is broken or has run out of charge, the alert might not reach someone who can help, which could leave the person who has fallen without any assistance.

Why a monitored fall alarm could be the ideal solution

Person helping elderly relative get up

An alternative to a fall alarm that is linked to a mobile phone directly is a monitored personal fall alarm, where there is an emergency response team on hand 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, who are fully trained and able to respond and organise assistance if someone has a fall.

Where a fall alarm linked to a mobile phone is totally reliant on the recipient of the alert getting the message and taking appropriate action quickly, having a monitored fall alarm provides the safety net of a whole team of people standing by to help if something happens.

If a fall occurs in the middle of the night, the 24/7 team is there to provide reassurance and arrange assistance if needed. This might be simply notifying the designated contacts and telling them what has happened, but it could involve calling the emergency services if required. The team is experienced and trained to make decisions about what to do in this kind of situation.

Another aspect of a monitored fall alarm system is that if the person who has experienced a fall isn’t near a phone, the response team can still communicate with them through the alarm unit itself, which can give an additional layer of reassurance for the individual and their loved ones.

If your elderly relative or friend lives an active lifestyle and like to spend time out and about, away from their home, there are GPS trackers for seniors with fall detection technology, that can not only detect a hard fall and raise an alert, but also transmit the wearer’s location.

Having a monitored falling alarm provides that extra peace of mind that many older adults and their loved ones appreciate, because help can always be reached and there is a friendly and professional team on hand to help if something does happen.

If you’d like to find out more about our products and find the best option for your older loved one, get in touch with our team by calling 0800 0121 321 or browse our personal alarm range.

Independent living products brochure

Learn how personal alarms and home monitoring solutions can keep you or your loved ones safe and independent at home.

Download brochure

Ways to support independent living

Independent living products brochure

Learn how personal alarms and home monitoring solutions can keep you or your loved ones safe and independent at home.

Download brochure