Best TV For Seniors with Dementia

Best TV For Seniors with Dementia (2021): 4 Recommended TVs + Expert Buying Guide

By jwilder

If you have a loved one suffering from dementia, you have a lot to worry about beyond what’s on cable this afternoon. A few hours in front of the TV, though, can be a safe and purposeful way for your loved one to spend time. Check out our list of the best TV for seniors with dementia to learn which TVs for seniors are right for your situation!

What is a TV for Dementia?

There are no TVs that are designed specifically for people with dementia, but that doesn’t mean that every TV is the same. Think about some of the most common daily problems that people with dementia face: confusion, anxiety, and unfamiliarity with modern appliances. These issues dictate that the more complex the TV, the harder it will be for patients with severe dementia to use.

There are a few features that make a big difference for dementia patients:

  • Voice Commands: Patients can use their voice to control the TV, and systems like Amazon’s Alexa can even help patients a lot. It can remind them to take medicine, remember to eat, and more.
  • Simple Remotes: The simpler the TV remote is, the more it will resemble the TV remotes the patient has used their entire life. This makes it possible to watch TV with the remote
  • Digital Tuners: Instead of relying on smart TV apps, TVs that have digital tuners for local channels are very easy for dementia patients to understand, even as their disease progresses.
  • Smart TVs: Though they may be more complex, there are many Smart TV channels, such as Memory Lane that create programming that is calming and appropriate for patients with severely progressed dementia.

Best Brands of TVs for Dementia

  • LG: their TVs have simple remotes, are appropriately priced, and have very easy-to-use smart features. They’re an ideal choice for dementia patients!
  • TCL: This is, hands-down, the best cheap brand of TV. a TCL product competes very well with premium brands, but you can get a 43-inch size for less than $400!
  • Sony Bravia: If your loved one is a fan of movies and TV dramas, get them a Sony Bravia. They’re very intuitive, so they’re not bad for dementia. More important for cinephiles, though, Sony TVs never sacrifice picture quality for anything. If you’ve got a larger budget, go with Sony Bravia and don’t look back!

Price Range of TVs for Dementia

TVs aren’t cheap - and they never have been. In fact, the first color television on the market sold for $1,000 back in 1954. That’s equal to $10,169 in 2021!

The good news is that, unless you happen to have struck gold or won the lottery, you won’t be spending 10 grand on a TV any time soon. The normal price range for a new TV is between $300 and $1,500.

The price you’ll pay for a TV depends on a few different factors:

  • TV Size: The “standard” TV size is 37 or 43 inches, but you can find them as small as 24 inches and as large as 80 inches. The larger the room, the larger the TV should be.
  • Screen Resolution: HD and 4K are the two most common screen resolutions. HD TV looks crystal clear on any screen smaller than 40 inches, but at larger sizes, the “Ultra High Definition” 4K resolution is much clearer.
  • Screen Quality: Contrary to popular belief, screen resolution and screen quality aren’t the same. They’re similar, but not the same. Screen quality refers to the accuracy of the colors on the screen. Are the whites pure and brilliant? Are the blacks deep and true? If they are, you’ve got a great TV!
  • Brand: Popular brands like Sony, LG, and Samsung are always going to cost more than low-cost brands like TCL. If you’re working with a budget, it’s a good idea to stay away from those brands!

The Best TVs for Dementia Patients

1. Best Smart TV for Seniors with Dementia (Overall): Samsung 55-Inch UHD TU-8000 With Alexa

SAMSUNG 55-Inch Class Crystal UHD TU-8000 Series - 4K UHD HDR Smart TV with Alexa Built-in (UN55TU8000FXZA, 2020 Model)

If you’ve got a loved one who enjoys classic movies and TV shows, this Alexa-enabled TV is perfect for them. The picture is incredibly crisp and clean, the remote is easy to use, and the ability to speak to the TV through Amazon Alexa is incredibly valuable to dementia patients.

Because it’s Alexa-enabled, you can control the TV from your phone - even when you aren’t in the same zip code. That means, if your loved one has a problem with their TV or is watching it too much, you can help them out from a distance! You can even program different reminders and alarms to help them manage their day.

If you already use other products with Amazon Alexa, there is no reason you shouldn’t choose this TV. It’s big (but not too big), has a wonderful display, and will have your loved one calm and happy watching their favorite shows.

Pros

  • Alexa-enabled for easy controls
  • 55-inch 4K screen with bright colors
  • Costs less than $800

Cons

  • It may be too complex for patients with severe dementia
  • Not great for small rooms

2. Best Simple TV for Dementia Patients (Overall): Insignia 39-Inch TV with Digital Tuner

Insignia NS-39DF310NA21 39-inch Smart HD 720p TV - Fire TV

This TV has Alexa and a digital antenna built-in, so your loved one can watch their favorite local channels and control it with their voice. Voice commands might not seem like the best thing for a dementia patient, but they are easy to learn and don’t require motor skills like a regular remote would.

The picture resolution on this TV is nothing to write home about - it only has a 720P image which is passable but certainly not special. If your loved one is a big fan of cinema or live sports, the lower screen resolution won’t exactly be a delight. If you’ve got a loved one who’d prefer to catch reruns of The Dick Van Dyke Show (which is just as funny as ever, by the way), this is the perfect TV.

Pros

  • Small screen is perfect for small rooms
  • Built-in digital antenna
  • Easy to use, includes Alexa

Cons

  • Low screen resolution
  • Speakers aren’t great

Best TVs for Seniors with Dementia (Runners-Up)

TCL 43-inch 4K UHD Smart LED TV - 43S435, 2021 Model

This TV has a lot to offer - it’s large, it delivers 4K picture and an easy-to-understand Smart TV layout - but it costs less than $350. It’s available in several different sizes, from 43 inches to 85 inches (the 85-inch version costs far more than $350 but is still a good deal).

If you’re looking for a great TV that fits a modest budget, there is no better TV brand than TCL, and this one is their 2021 model. These TVs are loved by many movie and sports fans who want a high-quality TV that won’t cost a fortune.

One of the best things about this TV is the sound quality. Usually, the built-in speakers on newer TVs are nothing worth bragging about - manufacturers assume their customers will have a soundbar or surround sound system and, therefore, put very cheap speakers in their TVs. The TCL TV, on the other hand, has great sound quality, eliminating the need for a soundbar or speaker!

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Available in several sizes
  • Great sound and picture quality

Cons

  • Remote isn’t easy to use
  • Smart TV features sometimes lag
Sony X85J 50 Inch TV: 4K Ultra HD LED Smart Google TV with Native 120HZ Refresh Rate, Dolby Vision HDR, and Alexa Compatibility KD50X85J- 2021 Model, Black

This Sony TV has the best picture quality of any TV on our list. If you want the best possible picture for your loved one, this is the TV for you. It may not be as easy to use or as friendly to seniors, but if you can teach your loved one to use it, they’ll love every second they spend watching it.

It does have one thing going for it that can help seniors: a very simple to understand remote. It’s got a few more buttons than 80s and 90s remotes did, but it looks and works the exact same. No funny shapes or random buttons - even the Netflix button is clearly labeled. If the dementia patient in your life doesn’t like the idea of using Alexa to watch TV, think about how this remote would make things easier for them!

Pros

  • Simple and intuitive remote
  • Superb picture quality
  • Still relatively affordable

Cons

  • Smart TV features aren’t as simple as with other TVs
  • A bit on the expensive side

Buyer’s Guide: What to Look for in a TV for Dementia

  • Simplicity: Watching TV on their own is barely viable for most dementia patients as a leisure option. The simpler the TV, the better. You may even want to invest in a simple universal remote with large buttons that makes viewing as simple and comfortable as can be.
  • Shut-Off Timer: Watching too much TV is bad for dementia patients, so it’s important to find a TV that will automatically turn off after a few hours of viewing. That way, your loved one can enjoy some leisure time without going too far.
  • Digital Tuner: This has already been covered, but it is important to mention again. Cord-cutting often leaves dementia and Alzheimer's patients in the dark, literally. If you find a TV with a built-in digital tuner, it’s always a good buy.

Conclusion

Finding a good TV for your loved one with dementia is never easy, because nothing when it comes to dementia is easy. If you do your research and work hard to take care of your loved one, though, you can get them a TV that is both appropriate for them and great for daytime entertainment.

Which TV from our list do you think is right for your loved one? Leave your thoughts below!


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