Enhance Senior Living with Alexa: Top Tips and Tricks

Alexa, the virtual assistant developed by Amazon, offers seniors in residential settings a range of practical and empowering functionalities. The benefits of Alexa go beyond the entertainment and shopping experience we are used to at home. In our communities, Alexa enhances independence and safety, creates social connectedness, provides cognitive stimulation, and streamlines caregiver processes. Further, through voice commands, seniors can control various aspects of their environment, from adjusting lights to setting reminders for medication and appointments.


Enhace Senior Living, smart apartments

The Alexa’s that we provide are specifically set up for our communities. They are highly secure, with no credit card or personal data shared with Amazon. It’s like having a personal concierge device in your apartment. Our residents can get community content, make requests, make audio/video calls, sign up for events and more.

General Tips for Seniors with Alexa Integrated in Their Apartments

Medication Reminders:

  • Trick: Set daily medication reminders to ensure you never miss a dose. Say “Alexa, remind me to take my medication at 8 AM every day.”
  • How to Set Up: Use the Reminders feature in the Alexa app to create recurring reminders.

Making Calls:

  • Trick: Set up Alexa to call contacts with a specific command like “Alexa, call Mary.” or “Alexa, call the front desk.”
  • How to Set Up: We can invite you to our community app and you can manage the address book with unlimited contacts. Make video calls, send texts or photos easily to Alexa. This is already set up with the most important contacts in the community. We also provide an app where either the resident or a loved one can manage the Alexa address book directly.

Making Requests:

  • Trick: Use Alexa to ask for help or make a request “Alexa, I need help.” or “Alexa, get maintenance.”
  • How to Set Up: Alexa is already connected to the people in the community and by using Alexa, you can ask for specific things and the community is notified.

Get Community Content:

  • Trick: Use Alexa to ask for the menu and calendar. Say “Alexa, what’s on the calendar?” or “Alexa, what’s on the menu?”
  • How to Set Up: Alexa is already set up for you and the community content is available at any time just by asking.

Start Your Day or Check In:

  • Trick: Use Alexa to check in with the community and get all your content. Say “Alexa, good morning?” or “Alexa, start my day?”
  • How to Set Up: Alexa is already set up, and when you ask Alexa to start your day, she will ask you if you’d like to hear about the day’s activities and more. It also tells the community you are up and about.

Entertainment and Media:

  • Trick: Use Alexa to play music and radio stations. Say “Alexa, play classical music” or “Alexa, what’s in the news today.”
  • How to Set Up: Alexa plays free radio stations like iHeartRadio and TuneIn, and has access to live radio stations from around the world.

Weather and News Updates:

  • Trick: Get daily weather forecasts and news briefings by asking “Alexa, what’s the weather today?” or “Alexa, what’s the news?”
  • How to Set Up: Just ask Alexa for what you want, such as a news station or weather from any location in the world.

Daily Routine and Check In:

  • Trick: Participate in routines to start your day. Say “Alexa, good morning” to get messages, hear all your content and let the community know you are up and about.
  • How to Set Up: The Good Morning routine is turned on for your apartment when you move in and is already personalized for you.

Sleep and Relaxation Aids:

  • Trick: Use Alexa to play white noise, nature sounds, or guided meditations to help with sleep. Say “Alexa, play ocean sounds” or “Alexa, start a guided meditation.”
  • How to Set Up: We have turned on sleep and relaxation skills for you to enjoy.

Fitness and Exercise Guidance:

  • Trick: Access guided workouts and exercise routines. Say “Alexa, start senior stretch” or “Alexa, open meditopia.”
  • How to Set Up: We have added fitness skills to your Alexa and staff will help determine which one’s will be best for you.
Enhance Senior Living with Alexa: Top Tips and Tricks

Atlas Senior Living

10 Alexa Shortcuts for Senior Living:

“Alexa, call the front desk”: Directly dial the community front desk for immediate assistance.

“Alexa, good morning”: Provides a summary of the day’s events, menu items, a daily question, community news and any messages from friends and family.

“Alexa, tell me a joke”: Lightens the mood and provides a moment of laughter, promoting emotional well-being.

“Alexa, play relaxing sounds”: Initiates soothing sounds like rainfall or ocean waves to create a calming atmosphere.

“Alexa, remind me to drink water every hour”: Sets periodic reminders to stay hydrated throughout the day, promoting good health.

“Alexa, what’s the time?”: Provides instant access to the current time, ensuring seniors can keep track of their schedule and daily routines.

Tips for Memory Care

Specific and Repetitive Reminders:

  • How to do it: Set multiple and repetitive reminders for daily tasks like “Alexa, remind me to drink water every hour.”
  • Utility: Helps residents with memory issues stay hydrated and follow their routine.

Music and Cognitive Therapy:

  • How to do it: Ask Alexa to play music or relaxing sounds that the resident enjoys. Specific playlists for cognitive therapy can also be used.
  • Utility: Music can be a powerful therapeutic tool to improve mood and memory.

Temporal Orientation Questions:

  • How to do it: Set up Alexa to answer orientation questions with commands like “Alexa, what day is it?” or “Alexa, what time is it?”
  • Utility: Helps residents stay oriented in time, which is crucial for those with memory issues.

Stories and Relaxing Tales:

  • How to do it: Ask Alexa to tell stories or read tales with commands like “Alexa, tell me a story” or “Alexa, read a fairy tale.”
  • Utility: Provides relaxing entertainment and can help calm residents.

Recorded Messages from Family:

  • How to do it: Family members can record messages using the Alexa app and send them to the resident’s device. Use commands like “Alexa, play my messages.”

Utility: Keeps residents connected with their loved ones and provides affectionate reminders of their family and personal history.

Tips for Assisted and Independent Living

Smart Home Control:

  • How to do it: Integrate devices like smart plugs and appliances that can be controlled with Alexa. Use commands like “Alexa, turn on the coffee maker” or “Alexa, turn off the bedroom light.”
  • Utility: Provides convenience and security, allowing efficient home management through voice control.

Recipes and Cooking:

  • How to do it: Ask Alexa to find and read recipes with commands like “Alexa, give me a tomato soup recipe” or “Alexa, how do you make carrot cake?”
  • Utility: Simplifies meal preparation and promotes independence in the kitchen.

Clock and Timer:

  • How to do it: Use commands like “Alexa, set a 20-minute timer” to assist in cooking or other timed activities.
  • Utility: Helps manage time efficiently and prevents forgetting tasks.

Access to Local Information:

  • How to do it: Ask Alexa for local event information, public transportation schedules, or store opening hours with commands like “Alexa, what events are near me today?” or “Alexa, when does the nearest supermarket open?”
  • Utility: Facilitates planning activities outside the home and enhances connection with the local community.

Exercise and Fitness:

  • How to do it: Ask Alexa to guide exercise routines or stretches with commands like “Alexa, start my workout routine” or “Alexa, play a yoga video.”
  • Utility: Promotes regular physical activity and helps maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Integrating Alexa into senior living apartments across different care modalities—assisted living, memory care, and independent living—can significantly enhance quality of life. With simple voice commands, residents can manage daily tasks, stay connected with loved ones, and ensure a safe and comfortable environment. These tips provide practical guidance to fully leverage Alexa’s capabilities in daily senior living.

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