Have you heard of the term Assistive Technology, but you aren’t sure what it really means? Let us lift the curtain and demystify what this technology is all about…

What Is Assistive Technology?

Assistive Technology allows someone to perform a task that they would not normally be able to, increases their chances of performing a task with more ease and safety, or assists individuals to carry out daily activities. This can be achieved by using a device, a system, or a certain design.

Assistive technology can range in complexity. It can be something as simple as a device to open a jar, or as complex as a specialised computer, and a fully automated home control system. Assistive technology does not necessarily have to involve a technological aspect, it can also include environmental design, home modifications, or a different approach to a task.

Who Uses This Technology?

Technically, everyone uses some form of this technology to make their life easier. We all have gadgets, apps, and processes that allow us to complete things easily and efficiently. But some people require the technology more than others. Examples of this increased need would be those that require a wheelchair, a modified vehicle, or even specialist footwear or equipment.

What Options Are Available?

There is a solution for pretty much everything. So, depending on the disability in question, you will probably have more than one solution available.

Assistive Technology is not limited to, but includes solutions for…

  • Mobility impairments

  • Visual difficulties

  • Hearing impairments

  • Personal emergency response systems

  • Computer accessibility and software

  • Alternative communication options

  • Cognitive difficulties

  • Eating impairments

  • Sports technology

  • Educational assistance

  • Home automation

What Is Best For Me?

The possibilities for assistance are almost endless. Because of this, the decision for the right piece of technology can be overwhelming. It is best to seek advice from a professional to help you decide what is the right fit for your situation. The first step would be to consult your lead medical carer.

Because everyone is different, there is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Discuss with your doctor or specialist about the best fit for you. You will need to discuss…

  • Your goals for the future

  • Your current situation and abilities

  • If there are barriers of roadblocks in the way,

  • The location and environment you wish to use the technology in

  • The features of the technology available

  • Any disadvantages of the technology

Knowing all of these things will allow you to make an informed decision on the option that is best for you. If you don’t feel you have received the best advice, then it is completely fine to seek a second opinion also.