Apple Watch Series 8: Fall Detection, Medication Reminders & Medical Monitoring

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The new Apple Watch Series 8 doubles down on its commitment to safety, health, and wellness.
Image via Apple

Each year, as a new Apple Watch is released, everyone is intrigued by more than just the new styles and preferences available in the new series. Instead, tech professionals and Apple fans alike wait to see what features the new Apple Watch will have and how those features can further improve the life of the user.

When the Series 8 watch was released in September 2022, it did not disappoint. In fact, Apple doubled down on its commitment to safety, health, and wellness by keeping user-favorite features and adding more opportunities for users to stay on top of their wellness goals.

What does this mean for Apple Watch users over the age of 55? For many older adults, the Apple Watch Series 8 can be a helpful tool that offers fall detection technology, medication reminders, medical monitoring, and other safety features.

Apple Watch Series 8: Fall Detection

For a few Series releases now, Apple has ensured that fall detection technology is available in their newly released watches. The Series 8 continues the trend. The Series 8 uses fall detection technology in order to determine if a user has a fall. This technology is always working, but it is optimized in the Series 8 when using the workout app. This means that seniors who are taking a walk around the neighborhood or trying out balance exercises can use the workout app to not only track their heart rate and steps, but to also ensure if they fall in the process, they will be able to receive assistance through their watch.

Like the Series 7 before it, the Series 8 will ask the user if they have fallen via a prompt on the watch screen. If the user doesn’t respond to the prompt, the watch will treat it as a fall and alert emergency response.

In addition to fall detection, the Series 8 boosts its safety features to include car crash detection. Using similar technology, the watch is designed to check on users when it suspects a severe car crash. This can be useful for people of all ages, of course, but it certainly adds in a layer of peace of mind for any senior who is still driving.

Apple Watch Series 8: Medical Monitoring & Medication Reminders

Beyond the safety components built into the Series 8, there are also medical monitoring features that can support any older adult. The Series 8 has a sensor that takes blood oxygen readings on-demand in addition to taking background readings throughout the day and nighttime. This can be helpful for someone living with COPD or illness, as well as for healthy seniors looking to detect any potential problems.

The on-demand ECG capability is also on the Series 8 and is comparable to a single-lead electrocardiogram. Information about the reading can be stored on the user’s Health app so it can be accessed and shared at their next physician appointment if needed.

Finally, pairing the Series 8 with the Medications app can make managing a complex medication schedule even easier. The app will push notifications to the watch telling the user when it is time to take prescriptions or over-the-counter medications. The user can log that they took the medications and can change the schedule as needed on the app. It’s a handy tool that can benefit many seniors.

Apple Watch Series 8: Family Caregivers

Family caregivers can connect to their older adults and stay in the loop with their health by being designated as an emergency contact for any potential fall-related notifications. Family caregivers can also be designated on the Health and Medications app in order to see any missed medications or health events.

We also like the Family Setup feature. Family caregivers can use their iPhone to pair watches for their older loved one in case that older loved one doesn’t have their own. This allows for easy texting on the watch for adults who might not want their own iPhone.

There are plenty of options so that users can personalize their Apple Watch experience.
Image via Apple

More Features of the Series 8

Of course, Apple isn’t only focused on medical monitoring and fall detection (though we love that). There are plenty of other features on the Series 8 that can be useful for a variety of users, including:

  • Water resistant design, perfect for seniors who wear their watch in the shower or in the pool
  • Crack-resistant design, making it extra durable
  • Sleep monitoring includes noting wake times, REM cycles, and more
  • Heart rate zone tracking during workouts
  • Customized workouts for each user’s individual needs
  • Maps are easy to pull up and follow on the go
  • Lots of wristband options and screen face options to make the watch express personal style

The Apple Watch can be the ideal safety and wellness device for a senior who is comfortable with iOS technology or who is willing to learn. Consider one for yourself or your older loved one.