Technology can make a difference

Technology can make a difference

By Brian Ellis

As seniors, pensioners, or one of ‘the Ageing’, borrowing that description from our organisation’s title, we have lived some 30 to 50 years during which so much new technology has exploded into our personal world, and changed it in so many different ways.

This transformation has impacted not only our behaviour, but also our mindsets. But resistance to change is deeply imbedded in us all, and some changes have been difficult to introduce into our lives. And yet the changes keep coming.

It’s worth reflecting on how much technology is benefiting us, as it can sometimes seep into our way of doing things without us even recognising what is happening. Recently, physical money has almost disappeared as a way of paying for products and services. Several times recently I have looked at my wallet and seen I had no paper money, yet had no concern in heading out to shop, paying for coffee or filling up the car with petrol. The tap of a card would fulfil this task for me.

Another practice linked to new technology is how the younger generation and use their phones in their lives, constantly listening to music, watching videos or playing video games, at the same time cutting themselves off from society, and general conversation. Not perhaps an ideal outcome.

However, on the positive side is the practice that this generation has developed of using their phone camera as a communication aid. Many times I have taken a photo of a label of a food product or an item of clothing to convey a message to a family member. Anything that that requires a description in words is immediately conveyed in a photo image. The result is a saving of time and the removal of any chance of a mistake or misunderstanding.

This practice came to mind recently in a personal situation. Some weeks previous, I had a skin cancer removed from the muscle of one leg. It required a cut of about 5 cms and all went well. Unfortunately, one day after the removal of the stitches, the wound split completely. Some panic, of course, but then it was re-stitched and the path of re-healing began with instructions from my doctor re daily change of the dressing. If any problems, return to the medical centre.

At one stage I was unhappy with what I saw but uncertain whether I needed a further medical consultation. I had been to the medical centre so many times with this problem that the last thing I felt like doing was going again, but I was still worried. Then I thought about what people do today when they have technology to assist.

Out came the phone and a photo of my wound was taken, then sent to my Doctor’s phone, and within 30 minutes I had a reply with instructions on how to proceed. Peace of mind achieved, no driving to and from the Medical Centre and an hour of my life not wasted.

Yes, new technology can make a difference in your life.