Using a Timer Device for the Stove: Experiences of Older Adults With Memory Impairment or Dementia and Their FamiliesBy Starkhammar, Sofia; Nygard, Louise; Technology and Disability, Vol. 20, No. 3, pp. 179-191
Publication Date: 2008
Study explored experiences of older users with memory impairment and their families of a timer device attached to the stove. The timer, which was distributed free of charge to people with memory impairment and dementia, was in the form of a small white box attached to the wall above the stove and controlled through the existing burner knobs. The device contained a heat sensor and a magnetic key that could temporarily inactivate the timer. A green light, steady when off, and blinking when on, indicated stove usage. Optional settings included timing adjustment and an auditory alarm signal. For the study, open interviews were conducted with 9 older people with memory impairment and 5 of their family members regarding their experiences with the stove timer, during which participants also demonstrated how they used the device. Findings showed that the users scarcely participated in the process of choosing and adapting the device, which was mostly left to professionals whom they were reluctant to “bother” for operating instructions. Once installed, the users tried to adjust to it and learn on their own how it worked. Operating problems described included understanding timing adjustments and the function of the magnetic key. Overall, study results were found to illustrate how users strive to relate to and make sense of technology, suggesting that home modifications with assistive technology should more actively involve the users. The findings also emphasized the importance of follow-up of technological support to older adults with memory impairment.
Published by: IOS Press (Website:http://www.iospress.nl)
Association for the Advancement of Assistive Technology in Europe (AAATE) (Web Site: http://www.aaate.net )
Link to text: http://iospress.metapress.com/content/e45n0354q22r1n41/
This publication is included in the library of the National Rehabilitation Information Center (NARIC), accession number J55489