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Alzheimer & Dementia Care

Floor Mat Alarm System-Buying Guide

Floor mat alarm systems are the ideal solution to monitoring patients who suffer from Alzheimer’s or Dementia by alerting the caregiver if he/she cannot be physically present with the patient. They are easy to install and reliable. The way most Floor mat alarm systems work is that they are equipped with pressure sensors that trigger an alarm once they receive any pressure. 

When the patient steps on the mat or falls on it, the sensors immediately record the pressure and trigger an alarm on the monitor, which is either placed in the same room and connected to the mat via wires or is portable and carried by the caregiver.  Depending on the purpose, an alarm mat may be placed on the floor right next to the patient’s bed, in front of a chair or in the doorway.

 If a patient tends to leave the room frequently in the absence of the caregiver, the mat should ideally be placed in the doorway. If the patient is likely to fall or just get off the bed or chair to roam within the same room, these mats should be placed on either side of the bed or in front of the chair to alert the caregiver. The caregiver may choose to place it in one or all of these locations.

Although the basic features of floor mat alarm systems are the same, some features may differ from one company to another. When looking for a suitable floor mat, the following things need to be kept in mind:

Wired or wireless

Keeping in mind the pros and cons of wired and wireless systems; one must select a mat that suits their requirements.

Some floor mats are connected to an alarm using chords. The alarm in such cases is bulky and needs to be placed within the same room as the patient. Although such floor mat alarm systems are cheaper than wireless systems, they come with the risk of the patient tripping over the wires and falling, the alarm disturbing others in the same room or frightening the patient.

Wireless systems can be connected to a pager or other various types of alarms that are portable and so it can be carried around by the caregiver. This means that the alarm can ring without the patient hearing it. Different wireless floor mat systems have different ranges. The alarm only works if it is within a certain range of the mat (keep in mind that obstructions cause the range to be reduced further). Wired systems are more reliable in that aspect.

Size

Before you buy a mat, ask yourself where you need to place the mat. A smaller mat will suffice if it needs to be placed in a doorway but if you must place it on either side of the bed, it needs to be large enough so that it covers the length of the bed and does not leave any room for the patient to get off the bed without stepping on the mat.

Components

Before you purchase a mat, check all the components that come with the package. Sometimes the system may only include the mat itself and you may have to purchase, for example, a monitor/pager, batteries and other essentials separately. Choose a deal where you get all or most of the needed accessories to avoid the hassle of having to look for and buy the remaining items later.

Controls

When choosing the right mat, often the controls are overlooked, but these can make a big difference when it comes to ease of usage. Some mats come with a reset button or an on/off switch to turn off the alarm once the caregiver has been alerted, but some will keep ringing for as long as there is some pressure on the mat. Some have the option to control the volume but others have a set volume that cannot be changed if it is too high or too low. Choose a system that has flexible controls for a more relaxed experience.

Maximum volume

The maximum volume of the alarm in some mats may not be high enough, resulting in the caregiver possibly missing an alarm and being unable to attend to the patient. On the contrary, some alarms may have such a high volume that they become too loud and disturbing for the patient and anyone else in the same room. It is best to test the volume of the product or read reviews about it before picking one.

Durability

Although more sturdy and long-lasting mats may be more expensive than the thinner ones, it is worth the investment to buy a mat that has a warranty of at least a couple of years. Thicker materials also provide a bit of cushioning in case of a fall.

Grip

The placemat must have a good grip, so it does not slip when stepped on. This protects the patient from tripping and falling, preventing any possible injuries.

After considering the features mentioned above, you may refer to the following list of floor mat alarm systems to buy:

Product
Visual
Where to Buy

Floor Mat Exit Alarm for Elderly Fall Prevention & Anti-Wandering by  Smart Caregiver Corporation

Vive Wireless Floor Alarm Mat - Fall Sensor Kit for Elderly, Seniors, Dementia Patients

Floor Mat & Wireless Pager No Alarm Noise in Patient's Room! by Smart Caregiver

Secure Caregivers Alert System Bedside Floor Mat Sensor with Fall Alarm Monitor, Nurse Call Button & Wireless Pager

Ideal Security SK630 SOLO Pressure Mat

Pressure Activated Alarm Mat w/ Siren & Strobe

 

1. Floor Mat Exit Alarm for Elderly Fall Prevention & Anti-Wandering by  Smart Caregiver Corporation

This anti wandering floor mat is an excellent technology manufactured by Smart Caregiver for patients suffering from Alzheimer’s and Dementia around the world. All you need to do is connect the weight-sensing floor mat to a fall prevention exit alarm. 

When the patient steps on the mat, it will immediately let out some sound, alerting you that the patient requires some help or is simply trying to escape. This system weighs 5.5 pounds with dimensions 48 x 24 x 0.2 inches. The floor mat is made of heavy-duty material which will last for a long period of time. It is grey in color with beveled edges. The material has a good grip which prevents slipping. Also, it has an 8′ cord that plugs into the alarm. The alarm’s volume can easily be adjusted or delayed and is durable with one year warranty.

2. Vive Wireless Floor Alarm Mat – Fall Sensor Kit for Elderly, Seniors, Dementia Patients

Vive floor mats are manufactured by Vive Health which enables caregivers to provide patients with quick help. It is easy to set up and has an antimicrobial waterproof pad that gives complete protection from water, dirt and dust measuring 35.4” x 23.6” in size. This rubber pad is lightly textured while being latex-free which eliminates the risk of slipping or falling. It comes with a wireless transmitter that can connect with several other devices such as a pager, door light alarm or a nurse call button.

The package includes a Vive wireless floor alarm sensor pad, wireless sensor pad transmitter and a manual.

3. Floor Mat & Wireless Pager No Alarm Noise in Patient’s Room! by Smart Caregiver

This unique floor mat manufactured by Smart Caregiver comes with a no-noise feature so that the patient is not disturbed by the sound of the alarm in their room. It is a great feature for the caretaker as it allows them to move around freely as long as they are within 150 feet and will still immediately give them an alert call if the patient steps on the mat. 

The pager can be kept anywhere or even clipped on the belt and includes three volume options, vibrate option and tone options. It is a durable, high-quality floor mat with bevelled edges and a non-slip surface. There are a few items that are not included in the package but need to be bought separately. They include an AC adapter, 2 AA batteries required for the pager and 3 AA batteries for the monitor. However, the things that are included in the package are Two Kerr Medical disposable, high absorbency bed protector pads. 

Product Dimensions are 10 x 8 x 3 inches and it weighs 1.4 pounds. 

4. Secure Caregivers Alert System Bedside Floor Mat Sensor with Fall Alarm Monitor, Nurse Call Button & Wireless Pager

This system is manufactured by Personal Safety Corporation. The patient can easily send signals to the remote caregiver pager whenever help is required because the monitor is placed next to the patient. Corded nurse call button that is included needs to be plugged into the Fall Alarm Monitor to work. 

Pager has a lot of features that include: Multiple alarm/melody, three alert options and LED light indicators. It can be carried, worn or placed anywhere as long as it is close to the caretaker.

It includes a CAS-FAM Fall Alarm Monitor with adjustable volume/tone, a flashing alert light, and a wireless connectivity to CAS-PGR Caregiver Pager. Like most mats, this one is also made of durable latex-free, antimicrobial material. 

5. Ideal Security SK630 SOLO Pressure Mat

The manufacturer’s purpose of developing this product is to notify who comes and goes around the mat. The mat has two modes: Alarm and Chime. In the alarm mode, the sensor will trigger a loud alarm which will last for 39 seconds. In the chime mode, a ding-dong sound is heard twice each time someone steps on the mat. You can also switch the alarm off whenever you don’t want it to sound. It is not waterproof and can be placed outside for use. 

Not just for Elderly patients, but it can be used to keep your children safe, get alerted to visitors and is also great for pets. Anything weighing around 1lb per square inch will trigger the mat. Mat dimensions are 21.75” x 13.75” and weigh 8 ounces. There is a 30′ wire between mat and alarm unit and the wire can be extended up to 65 feet

6. Pressure Activated Alarm Mat w/ Siren & Strobe

This Pressure Activated Alarm Mat w/ Siren & Strobe manufactured by Latest Buy can be placed outside your house just like any other ordinary mat. The difference is that it requires a 1 X 9v Alkaline battery (not included) to be placed under your doormat and plugged into the alarm unit for working. As soon as your guest arrives and steps on the mat it rings a melodious tune which also is a great way to welcome them. Depending on your requirement, you can set the alarm unit to either chime or alarm. It features also include a super-loud siren 120dB+ and a red Strobe light that works as a smart alert. Product Dimensions are 2 x 6.7 x 9.2 inches and weigh 10.2 ounces. You can also gift this mat to your friends and family. 

Conclusion

In this world of endless possibilities, buying an item as simple as a floor mat can put one in a dilemma. To make it easier for you to choose the best mat to use, keep all your requirements in mind, then read through the descriptions or reviews of the options that you have. Some stores also allow you to open and check items before you buy them. This could help you further in making your choice.

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