Device apps head off visits to doctors

Although many think of phone and tablet apps as nice diversions, an increasing number are also developed to assist those with serious health issues.

Chronic illness is the bane of many as they age and that hasn’t gone unnoticed by app developers.

Here’s a few notable apps to help those dealing with chronic pain.

Medisafe is a free medication tracking app that alerts the user to scheduled medication times, refill schedules and even medication prices. Further, it can share information with other members of your personal health team including doctors and pharmacies.

Flaredown’s name telegraphs its use somewhat. It’s an app developed to help those with chronic illness learn to prevent flare-ups. The more a user uses the app, the better it gets at predicting triggers. As well, users can forward their data to researchers to aid them in their work.

Apple Health & Google Fit are good options for those looking for a general app to track changes in blood sugar, as well as calories burned, heart rate, cholesterol etc.

What’s useful about these two apps is how they deftly integrate with other fitness apps allowing the apps to serve as a good summary of all of the health information available in an easily customizable interface.

iTriage Health. This app acts as a resource for patients, allowing them to research symptoms and link them up with causes. Fully understanding that it’s not a true diagnostic program, it nonetheless does a good job providing basic information to bring to any of the doctors it locates near wherever you are.

There are more of course, including many on proper eating and exercise tips to motivate users.

Given the soaring costs of health care, self-care is a growing area of interest. The more seniors can do to monitor and improve their own health, the better.

So the next time you see a senior sitting somewhere studying their phone intensely, they’re probably not playing Pokemon Go. They could be getting a check up.