Making your medicine cabinet digital
From robot vacuums to electronic refrigerators to smart TV, households are more tech-savvy and predictive than ever before. And that smart technology is invading the medicine cabinet with new tech-focused tools to help users improve the health and manage their medications.
While the pandemic has made swift use of digital temperature scans and blood oxygen monitors, there are several other new tech achievements that are reinventing how we think about medicine in the digital era. Below are some new technologies that are making health easier and changing the look of modern medicine cabinets:
COPD affects over 200 million people the world over, and asthma another 300 million. Chronic respiratory disease makes up a little over 8% of the world’s chronic disease burden. Smart inhalers help to mitigate the severity of these conditions while also helping to adhere to a strict medication schedule. A smart inhaler integrates with a mobile app and built-in sensors that record data about the time and date of use, and the location of the patient at each use. Smart inhalers allow patients and their doctors to track their condition and monitor the efficacy of treatment in individual patients over time, without having to keep diaries or other written records.
Digital drug companions
Imagine your smartphone keeping track of your medications, informing when to take each medication, at what dosage, and how often. And getting alerts when to take the next dose, refill medications, and connect with your clinician for questions or updates. This is the thinking behind digital drug companions. It’s a smartphone application for your medication. Medisafe offers digital drug companions that enable continuous connectivity with the patient to not only ensure proper adherence, but also offer reassurance and clarity throughout their medication journey.
Electronic allergy relief
Nasal allergies are one of the most common reasons people head to their medicine cabinet. But there is a new tech device aimed at changing the treatment of allergies. Flo uses precisely modulated light pulses delivered by putting the device into each nostril for 6 seconds to activate the body’s own antihistamine response (a process called photo biomodulation). It can treat allergies to tree pollen, grass, ragweed and dust without drowsiness, contraindications from other drugs, concerns about pregnancy or jobs that require strict drug-free compliance.
Diagnostics at home
Instead of heading to the lab and being poked and prodded by a phlebotomist, wouldn’t it be easier to just upload your diagnostic info from home? HealthyU makes it a reality with an at-home device that senses heart and lung sound and rate, blood oxygen saturation, body temperature and blood pressure. The product bundles a remarkable number of signals in a single handheld device. Butterfly Health offers a similar approach with FDA clearance to capture diagnostic imaging of urological, cardiovascular, fetal, gynecological and musculoskeletal anatomies.
Dental hygiene is also getting the brush up with new smart capabilities that track brushing performance and oral hygiene. Hum by Colgate connects to a smartphone app to help track brushing habits and present data that connects to the toothbrush. The Hum tracks the 16 zones in the mouth using machine intelligence algorithms, and guides users on best use to achieve optimal oral health.
Just like smart TVs and in-home digital assistants, the medicine cabinet is getting a tech makeover. New in-home digital health tools are helping users achieve better health, become more active in their own treatments, and gain better insight into their own health. Patient care is no longer limited to the doctor’s office, and the best information may be sitting in the medicine cabinet right now.