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Best Mobile Phone

Titch68

New member
Feb 8, 2022
8
0
Hi there, I’m just looking at getting a new, simpler mobile phone. She is in fairly early stages of Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia, but has a fairly new Samsung at the moment. Unfortunately she can’t find texts when they come in, she ‘loses’ anything that she types as a reply, and really just can’t remember what she’s meant to do when she gets her Facebook updates etc, which she used to keep up with. I have looked at the mobiles on the shop and some of them look very good, but there are very few reviews yet. I’m looking for a phone that is simple to use, she can still text and take photos, she could still use WhatsApp, but just a lot simpler to use. Does anyone have any recommendations?, thanks x
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
There are simple phones available that just do being a telephone but you are talking about text messages and at least one smartphone application such as WhatsApp and Facebook. You also want her to use a phone camera. This isn't simple stuff. Essentially you want something complex without complexity and I am afraid that isn't going to work. I have found with my own father, and there are many stories here of the same, that dementia reduces people's ability to follow instructions and use equipment of all sorts ranging from the kettle to a computer network server. Mobile phone operation is one of the things that people have to give up fairly early, especially smartphone apps. I fear that your only option here is to help her find other ways to do things and get used to doing without the likes of Facebook and WhatsApp.
 

Rosettastone57

Registered User
Oct 27, 2016
1,725
0
I think such a phone is going to be difficult to source quite frankly. Persons with dementia have difficulty learning anything new ,even if a simple phone might appear to us as easy to use. If she has difficulty with smart phone apps now, she isn't going to suddenly be able to use them on another phone. My mother in law had a simple on off radio, already tuned in and she still couldn't remember how to turn it on and off. Even with written instructions which she ignored both the radio and instructions she quickly put away in a cupboard out of sight once the capacity to use them had gone
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
12,133
0
Yorkshire
Hi @Titch68
Maybe take the current mobile into the local shop of the service provider and see if they have any ideas .... They may have ideas on how to reconfigure the 'home' page .... I've found the folk in mine helpful when I've had problems ... They may also have a suggestion for a simpler mobile
 

silkiest

Registered User
Feb 9, 2017
636
0
The Doro phones are supposed to be simple but neither MIL or mum could cope with even phone calls when they could see the photo of the person to ring. As far as using it as a smart phone goes it is neither intuitive or quick
 

Titch68

New member
Feb 8, 2022
8
0
Thank you everyone. I take your point about her ability to use these things in the future. However, as she is still in the early stages, we both feel that it is part of her independence that she doesn’t want to lose yet. e.g. I always text her morning and evening to remind her to take her tablets, and she will reply once she has taken them. If I don’t get a text I know I need to speak to her. I think maybe,a more basic phone will be the answer for now. She’s been knocked sideways by this diagnosis, and the frustration when she can’t find a text is upsetting. As I said, she is early stages. She is used to an iPhone, but decided to try an android when she upgraded. It is so different to use that she had trouble from day 1. Thank you @Shedrech for the only positive reply. I know things are now on a downward spiral, which other people are clearly way down the other end, but if mum can use a phone for even a few more months, she’ll be happier.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
Hi @Titch68
Maybe take the current mobile into the local shop of the service provider and see if they have any ideas .... They may have ideas on how to reconfigure the 'home' page .... I've found the folk in mine helpful when I've had problems ... They may also have a suggestion for a simpler mobile
This reply may be positive as @Titch68 says but it is not realistic. It is unlikely that mobile phone sales staff will have an understanding of dementia, unless you are very lucky. As @Rosettastone57 says things that seem easy to you me and the phone salesperson will not be learned by a PWD. I am sorry to say this suggestion offers false hope.
 

Pork Pie lady

Registered User
Mar 16, 2013
97
0
Anglia
There are simple phones available that just do being a telephone but you are talking about text messages and at least one smartphone application such as WhatsApp and Facebook. You also want her to use a phone camera. This isn't simple stuff. Essentially you want something complex without complexity and I am afraid that isn't going to work. I have found with my own father, and there are many stories here of the same, that dementia reduces people's ability to follow instructions and use equipment of all sorts ranging from the kettle to a computer network server. Mobile phone operation is one of the things that people have to give up fairly early, especially smartphone apps. I fear that your only option here is to help her find other ways to do things and get used to doing without the likes of Facebook and WhatsApp.
I am having to think about the same thing for my husband. He has been diagnosed 10 years and can still just about manage to use the basics. I was hoping it would outlast his ability to use it so I didn't have to search for a suitable one but his phone is now playing up.
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
12,133
0
Yorkshire
Hi @Titch68
Maybe go back to an iPhone as your mum was familiar with the layout ... try getting one as close to what she was used to as possible
an advisor in a shop may or may not know much about dementia (personally I have found that more people than I ever expected have come across dementia in their personal and professional lives, and advisors have been very patient and understanding of non techie me) however they will listen to you who knows her and her abilities, and they know the mobiles and how to configure them, so between you, you may be able to get something that she is able to work for some time ... surely worth a try
 

Cat27

Volunteer Moderator
Feb 27, 2015
12,831
0
Merseyside
@Titch68 I think going back to an iPhone like @Shedrech suggested is a good idea.
I’ve had an iPhone for years but have to use an android phone for work & they are completely different. The android is really difficult for me to use.
 

Knitandpurl

Registered User
Aug 9, 2021
155
0
Lincolnshire
I would like to suggest you introduce her to an Alexa, complete with screen, while she still has the ability to get used to (this will take time) , as it will continue to be useful in lots of ways (if she has already got used to) long after she is totally unable to use a phone. If you went back to an I phone you could also encourage her to use voice instructions, ie “Siri send a message to ,,,,,”, “Siri ring ….”, “Siri splay my music… “ etc. My husband can no longer read or write (has PCA dementia which affects sight very early), but most days he can do they ‘simple’ things on his I phone. And Siri will also speak responses.
 

PippaS

Registered User
Jan 3, 2022
29
0
Thank you everyone. I take your point about her ability to use these things in the future. However, as she is still in the early stages, we both feel that it is part of her independence that she doesn’t want to lose yet. e.g. I always text her morning and evening to remind her to take her tablets, and she will reply once she has taken them. If I don’t get a text I know I need to speak to her. I think maybe,a more basic phone will be the answer for now. She’s been knocked sideways by this diagnosis, and the frustration when she can’t find a text is upsetting. As I said, she is early stages. She is used to an iPhone, but decided to try an android when she upgraded. It is so different to use that she had trouble from day 1. Thank you @Shedrech for the only positive reply. I know things are now on a downward spiral, which other people are clearly way down the other end, but if mum can use a phone for even a few more months, she’ll be happier.
Could she go back to an iPhone if she was used to that before? Older memories can stay longer even when learning new things is hard. I changed Dad’s phone to a simple flip one as his old battery needed charging every day but soon had to swap him back.
 

Dunroamin

Registered User
May 5, 2019
256
0
UK
This is a subject that worries me greatly. At the moment I just about cope with my iphone, but am starting to require help in various aspects of its use.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
Unfortunately the ability to use technology is one of the things that fails with dementia. We can do some things to help and Alexa devices have helped many because they can be managed from afar, but there is no solution to the basic problem that a PWD gradually loses the ability to use computers and smartphones etc. The only approach that carers can effectively take is to try and reduce dependence on them.
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
12,133
0
Yorkshire
hi @Dunroamin
I appreciate how worrying it may be for you when it is not as effortless as previously to do what you want to with your iphone .... our 'tech' for all of us provides our way to communicate with others, keep up with the world, express ourselves and maintain our independence which should be protected as far as is possible

for people with a diagnosis so many things are possible at various times using some (hi or low) tech support .... I'm glad you're getting help to keep using yours ... someone's carer is usually best placed to know the abilities and preferences of the person they support and of course they want to enable them to do as much as they can

if you have any tips to share, that would be interesting ... your posts are so thoughtful and thought-provocking
 

Wrighty1

New member
Jun 16, 2021
3
0
I’m just looking into something like this for my mum however she only needs to ring out in an emergency I have looked and you can get a simple mobile with 4 photos and sos contact has anyone tried this just wondered before I buy one? My mum is not able to text or read just need to use in an emergency if anything happens to my dad? Or any other ideas for her to get in touch with some in an emergency would help! Many thanks