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Product in Focus: Dementia and Alzheimer's Awareness Month

21 September 2023

Over 400,000 Australians are living with dementia – a term used to describe a progressive loss of functioning, including memory, behaviour, and rational thinking, and September is the time to bring awareness to the condition, and how those living with dementia, their loved ones, and health professionals, can assist in making their lives easier, and more independent.  

This month is World Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease Month, which aims to raise awareness for and support those who are living with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, which is the most common form of dementia.  

Assistive technology, known as AT, includes a wide range of tools and devices that help people do things they might struggle with on their own, and can be incredibly helpful for those with dementia, to help them reduce the risk of dangerous situations, increase independence in their everyday activities, and look after their general wellbeing and mental health. 

Based on research by Dementia Australia, and Alzheimer’s WA, here are our suggested AT solutions to help you or your loved one. 

Reminders and Clocks 

As memory loss is a common symptom of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, pill reminders and clocks may be helpful to provide visual and auditory cues to help in taking medication or recognising the time and day. Automatic pill dispensers or lockable pill boxes with alarms and a visual indication of the time can ensure that only the correct dose is taken, and that it is taken at the right time, avoiding potentially overdosing or skipping a dose. Visual clocks can also be useful – they make things easier by providing the exact time, day and date, and even whether it is morning, afternoon, or evening, in large and easily visible letters. Some clocks, like the MemRabel 3-I, can even display a short video from family members.  

Suggested AT solutions: 


Finding and perceiving objects

There are a range of AT options available that can help someone with dementia locate and recognise common household objects, or personal belongings. Visual cues, such as glow in the dark tape, light switches, and even toilet seats, can help in identifying rooms in the dark, and can help if someone is disorientated or confused. Likewise, high contrast and brightly coloured cutlery and plates can provide a visual indicator, making it easy to find and differentiate in the kitchen, and also assisting in eating. Devices like the NutTag Find 3, or even AirTags, are also useful to attach to easily lost objects, such as car keys, and can help the user find them using their phone or a loud noise.  

Suggested AT solutions: 


Connecting with others 

Engaging with friends and family is incredibly important, not only for maintaining mental health and boosting your mood, but also for keeping your mind active.  With big colourful buttons that are easily accessible, phones like the BigPurplePhone and Konnekt Videophone are simple and easy to use and allow users to connect with their family over call or video – and the Konneckt also provides captions as well. Digital photo frames can be incredibly important in assisting those with dementia with their memory, particularly of their close friends and family, who can send photos and captions directly to the photo frame.  

Suggested AT solutions: 

see more phones and call systems



Keeping yourself, your loved ones, or your clients safe when living with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease is essential, and there are many different AT products that can help. Hot water can be a hazard in the kitchen or the bathroom, and so a bath scald warning device or a water boil alert can let the user know when water is too hot for use, or when it is at the right temperature, particularly if the user has forgotten or has left the stove on. Accessible kettles also reduce pain and strain and can help avoid burns.  

 Knowing where your loved one is, and if they are safe, can offer friends and family a sense of comfort. Personal alarms can alert emergency contacts if their family member has had a fall or medical emergency, and some come with GPS tracking, or alerts if they have left a certain area, particularly if they are at risk of getting lost. Smart plugs can also be used around the house – they monitor the appliances used, from light switches and TVs to kettles and toasters, take note of their usage and routine, and alert emergency contacts if that routine has been disrupted and the user could be at risk. 

Suggested AT solutions: 

see more kitchen and household safety products


To find out more about assistive technology, see our suggested AT solutions based on our survey with Parkinson’s WA