An Extra Security in Times of Grief

An Extra Security in Times of Grief

time icon 4 min read update icon Sept. 16, 2019


The bond between a couple is intense. Many senior couples share their lives for 30, 40, 50, or 60 years before one passes away and leaves the other alone. The transition can be shocking, painful and frightening. In an upheaval, the surviving senior will need extra security to get through. However, grief is not only isolated to the loss of a partner. The death of a family member, dear friend, or pet are also genuine causes of grief in an elderly person’s life. 


The grieving senior often feel alone and afraid. Grief is a powerful and all-encompassing emotion. During such times, extra security is required. A senior may be alone for the first time in their life, which may be terrifying. As a couple, the senior knew that if a medical emergency should occur, they could depend on their partner to call for help. However, living a solo lifestyle is an extreme adjustment for most seniors who are grieving. They require additional support and security during such a difficult time. Medical alert systems are one way that a grieving senior can feel less alone. Another option is an interactive computerized system that provides support, reminders, and assistance in the event of an emergency. Family and friends often opt to enroll the senior in a daily check-in service to make sure they are safe. 

Security Options for Grieving Seniors

During grief, the feeling of loneliness is not only overpowering emotionally, but also scary for many seniors. Many seniors isolate themselves from friends and family. They may lose their zest for life. In extreme cases, they may stop eating, cease personal hygiene and enter a deep depression. Family members and friends usually step forward and seek grief counseling for the bereaved senior, but even that is often not enough. 

Grief makes a person less cautious. The senior often walks around as if in a haze, which makes falls and other accidents even more likely. Having extra security options in place during the time of bereavement is undeniably comforting. Certain services can keep a senior safe during the grieving phase. Family and friends may also want to drop in daily to check on the senior. 

  • Medical Alert Services: Medical alert services can reduce the fear that a grieving senior feels about being alone by providing invaluable peace of mind. The senior wears a waterproof pendant around their neck or wrist. If an emergency should occur, the senior press the button on the pendant and is put in immediate contact with a highly trained operator who will evaluate the emergency, offer advice, and quickly dispatch life-saving first responders. The operator remains on the line during the entire process until the emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and first responders reach the senior. Medical alert pendants are also available that feature fall detection and global positioning services (GPS). If the senior falls, the pendant’s components are activated and call for help. When grieving, a senior might decide to go for a walk. Unfortunately, while walking, the elderly person might be deep in thought and become lost. With the GPS location services built into the medical alert pendant, first responders can locate a wandering individual if they become lost. 
  • Interactive Computerized Systems: Interactive computerized systems such as Google Home and Amazon Alexa are voice activated. The system works through a variety of sensors placed in various rooms. A senior can use the service to call for help, contact a family member or friend, arm the home’s security system, control the climate within the house, receive medical reminders, play videos, change television channels, ask for recipes, or a variety of other random questions. The service will dial family members on prompt and even put users in contact via social media. 
  • Check in Service: Daily care calls are usually an affordable way to make sure a senior is doing okay every day. A human caregiver will call at a predetermined time every day to check on the senior and make sure that they are doing okay. If the caller cannot reach the senior, then they will immediately reach out to the senior’s emergency contact. 

The loss of a loved one is never easy. A senior will go through an extended period of grieving and depression. During such a difficult time, the senior may be distant and preoccupied, which means they may not be actively paying attention to their surroundings. This puts them at an increased risk of an accident or fall. With a little extra security, the grieving individual can continue aging in place and living an independent lifestyle. The additional security measures may also help reduce the feelings of fear and loneliness that are all-too-common during the grieving process. 

Kimberly Sharpe - Senior Advisor

Kimberly is senior researcher with Grandfolk® providing in-depth product and service reviews to empower senior buying decisions.