Several companies offer telephone reminder calls that allow you to record, in your own voice, customized medication and safety reminder messages on the days and at the times you specify. For example, a message might be, “Mom, it’s time to take your medicine” (you can specify which one) or “Dad, it’s time to lock the door before you go to bed.”
The person still uses their own phone – no special phone or equipment is needed.
For persons with dementia, we recommend using companies that allow you to record your own message, ensuring that the voice is familiar to the person with dementia. Additionally, when you record the message, speak slowly and enunciate clearly, which can make all the difference in your loved one’s ability to understand the message.
Choose a service that automatically contacts you or other designated caregivers if the person hasn’t answered or acknowledged a reminder call. Check to see what options you have in receiving the alerts (phone, email, etc.).
- The person may not be able to follow the directions – pressing a specific number on the keypad – to acknowledge a call.
- Even if the person acknowledges the reminder call, this cannot guarantee that the meds are actually taken.
- Check that the phones are located for safe, easy access and that the person can clearly hear what you are saying.
- You may want to consider keeping your loved one’s meds next to the phone for convenience (if safe to do so).
There are many companies that offer reminder services using computerized voices or other people’s voices, but we are only reporting on those that allow the option of recording the message in your voice.