Modern Tech

How Modern Tech is Becoming a Helping Hand for the Specially Abled

In the past, the use of high-tech equipment was out of the reach of the elderly and disabled. A significant reason for this was the devices lacked certain features that could assist the specially ab or were too complicated for daily use.

However, enterprises have worked harder to ensure their technology is easily accessible and usable by anyone over the years.

Modern technologies, such as software, equipment, and devices, can assist the specially-abled performing activities of daily living (ADLs) easily and make their life much better. In addition, vast advancements in technology have ensured that individuals with entirely different requirements can benefit by utilizing the right technology.

Here are some high-tech devices that assist specially-abled people in accomplishing tasks that were hard to perform, thus promoting greater independence.

Motorized Wheelchairs

Motorized wheelchairs quickly replace self-propelled wheelchairs due to their ease of use and the ability to eliminate fatigue. These motorized devices consist of an electric motor and a rechargeable battery along with a joystick on the armrest for maneuvering. Moreover, modern battery-powered wheelchairs follow crash test standards 7176 and ISO 10562, securing the wheelchair and the occupant.

Modern electric wheelchairs resemble a lightweight mobility scooter for both indoor and outdoor use. These powerchairs are excellent for maneuvering around tight environments or terrain where it would be fatiguing to use manual wheelchairs.

Motorized wheelchairs increase mobility and dependence for specially-abled, allowing them to engage in everyday activities. These electric wheelchairs are best for people with mobility, fatigue, or pain-based impairment.

Bionic Exoskeletons

Neurologic injuries, such as stroke or spinal cord injury, often cause paralysis in patients, leading to movement disability. Hence, physical rehabilitation is vital to restore mobility in such individuals.

Bionic exoskeletons have the potential to revolutionize mobility for walking-impaired persons. This technology involves mechanical structures with sensors, actuators, and algorithms to execute a motor function.

Victims of neurologic injuries secure their limbs to the suit’s mechanical structure, which activates and utilizes weight sensors when the occupant shifts his weight forward, thus triggering the device to move ahead.

Modern bionic exoskeletons are integrated with functional electrical stimulation (FES) that uses low-energy electrical pulses to generate body movements in paralyzed individuals. Moreover, this technology allows them to retrain voluntary motor functions, including grasping, walking, and reaching.

Next-Generation Hearing Aids

People with hearing impairments face difficulty receiving auditory information compared to normal individuals and often rely on visual or other tactical mediums for receiving inputs. However, technological advancements offer this community a new generation of hearing aids that provide information in various environments.

The next generation of hearing aids works on cognitive hearing methodology, allowing the devices to monitor the user’s brain activity and identify which voice the wearer wants to focus on. It then amplifies the sound while augmenting the surrounding noise, allowing users to hear the speech.

Next-generation hearing aids leverage LE Audio and broadcast capability, ensuring a clear hearing in public spaces, such as airports or places with loud PA systems. Moreover, these devices are available in digital, in-the-ear, in-the-canal, or behind-the-ear styles, allowing individuals to choose as per their preference and actively participate in their communities.

Smart Helmet for Visually Impaired

Smart helmets are another excellent example of assistive technology that allows visually impaired individuals to go out, navigate freely, socialize, and do things that sighted people do regularly.

These smart helmets use unique acoustic signals that perform a complete 360-degree omnidirectional scan to identify objects within 3 meters. The rangefinders in the helmet collect these signals and output feedback to ultrasonic sensors, which helps the person determine the safe direction to proceed.

The helmet comes with artificial intelligence (AI)-driven frontal camera that describes the object or person in front of the wearer. In addition, the camera has text and image recognition software, which reads out texts on signs and books facing the camera.

Computerized Speech Generating Devices (SDGs)

Speech-generating devices are computer-based systems that supplement or replace speech for individuals unable to speak. These devices provide an electronic voice for people with severe speech impairments, communicating verbally and interacting with the community.

Modern SDGs are portable, hand-held devices that allow users to select from many images or text and then produce a synthesized voice. Moreover, high-tech SDGs can create a live, digitized voice of the typed message, ensuring effective communication.

Conclusion

Modern assistive technologies offer an opportunity for specially-abled people to lead a near-normal life and feel a part of society. Moreover, their primary purpose is to assist people in overcoming barriers and doing things that weren’t possible before. Furthermore, high-tech technologies significantly reduce the impact of impairments on an individual’s lifestyle, building confidence and increasing social participation. Several tech giants are also joining forces to ensure accessibility, thus reducing institutional costs without increasing your expenses.

Tags :

About the Author

Nicole King

Nicole is a shopaholic with decades of experience. With a passion for writing and an undeniable ability to grab the best deals, Nicole enjoys helping others feed their inner-shopaholic too. Her work has been featured on Business Insider, Lifehacker, The Motley Fool, USA Today, and Moneyish.