As people try to live healthier, the evolution of different technologies provides new options that can make it all easier and more effective. Here are the best tech products available or in development today that can help you maintain your health and might just revolutionize wellness.
1. Wearables and Wellness Go Hand in Hand
You probably already know about fitness watches. You’ll find simple models for light exercise, as well as more hardcore designs, like completely water-resistant fitness trackers. Whether you choose a Fitbit Luxe, an Apple Watch, or another popular device, these wellness wearables will track your heart rate, skin temperature, sleep patterns, and more. They can even call emergency services if you fall.
But there are wearables beyond watches. Oura, for example, offers high-tech fitness rings that you wear on your finger. And headphones come in all shapes and sizes now, like the Bose Sport Earbuds, which let you listen to music or podcasts no matter the sweat, weather, or activity.
2. VR and AR Technology Make Wellness Fun and Efficient
Health-related video games are making the most of virtual and augmented reality. Some titles give you a more fun incentive to exercise. Ingress Prime, for example, is an AR social game where you have to visit and collect local landmarks for your team, all of which you could do on foot.
Download: Ingress Prime for iOS | Android (Free, in-app purchases available)
VR’s contribution is even more impressive with apps like Holofit by Holodia on offer. This game lets you join different virtual activities, alone or with friends, while integrating your real fitness equipment. There are pros and cons to VR fitness technology and AR apps, but the way they’re revolutionizing wellness is clear. These are two technologies to watch as they bring all kinds of new experiences to your living room.
In fact, the whole healthcare system benefits from VR and AR, as they can help patients understand medical concepts and train doctors in anything from anatomy to surgery.
As companies like FundamentalVR and AppliedVR aim to boost the quality of virtual training and treatment, doctors and patients will experience this technology in healthcare more and more. Fortune Business Insights reports that this market’s value jumped from $459 million in 2021 to $628 million by 2022.
3. Mobile Apps Are Stepping Stones to Better Wellness
Fitness trackers usually work alongside apps to process your data and help you make sense of your activity and overall health. But your smartphone also gives you access to standalone software for all kinds of wellness purposes. Besides social workout apps and options like Google Fit to guide your active lifestyle, you’ll also find apps using cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia.
What makes mobile app technology that much more important is how it helps the healthcare system. Using health apps can better connect you with your doctor and facilitate any treatments you need.
A 2021 study on the use of health apps in German primary care, published in the Wien Med Wochenschr, made some interesting points. Firstly, although physicians were generally reluctant to recommend mobile health (mHealth) apps to their patients due to a lack of knowledge and training, 90 percent of respondents recognized the apps’ potential benefits in managing medicines and appointments. Further, 88 percent considered self-management apps especially helpful for patients with weight or blood sugar problems.
Their criteria for a good mHealth app were quite specific:
- Guaranteed data privacy
- Ease of use
- Personalization options
- Features that motivate patients’ health awareness
- Reliable credentials, such as reviews and studies
- Compatibility with office software
Acting on these points could encourage healthcare systems to embrace mobile apps and revolutionize their wellness applications.
4. 3D Printing in Healthcare Can Enhance Wellness in General
When it comes to wellness, it’s the medical field that makes the most use of 3D printing. Institutions can create tissue, bones, muscles, implants, prosthetics, and devices. Meanwhile, scientists are pushing for 3D-printed organs, personalized medication, and more in the near or distant future.
3D printers are available to the public, but advanced medical designs aren’t. Nonetheless, thanks to websites like Pinshape, consumers with 3D printers can download and print smaller items for wellness, like massagers and fitness dice.
5. Data Management Is Behind Enhanced Wellness Processes
Taking control of your well-being usually involves exercising more, eating better, and making other changes to your lifestyle. But you’ll get better results with a plan designed specifically for your physical condition, available funds, and spare time.
Thanks to data management suites like Oracle, more valuable data can be garnered when you use a fitness app, get an online prescription, and bookmark links from friends on social media. When done with privacy in mind, this helps people understand their needs and helps healthcare businesses learn how to serve their customers better.
Now, with the rise of platforms like Health Record Banking Alliance and Open Humans, which aim to store and share your medical data as you see fit, health data management is changing from a closed institutional setting to a personalized and even collective one.
A study published in Data and Policy in 2020 agrees that data trusts, marketplaces, and cooperatives are growing in popularity, providing users with troves of medical knowledge. But the study also poses three key questions:
- How secure is this personal data?
- How reliable is knowledge developed outside of a firm health system?
- Will equipping people with so much information encourage them to self-manage their health and avoid proper medical care?
Data processing has made wellness more efficient than ever, but there are still concerns to address before its potential can be realized.
6. Robotics Is Already Improving Daily Lives and Medical Treatments
Believe it or not, robotic process automation has been a part of society for a long time, but typically in the form of software that carries out repetitive administrative tasks. Today, popular hardware applications include devices for automated housework, like robot vacuum cleaners and self-cleaning cat litter boxes.
This consumer technology is impressive but not as transformative as what the health industry has developed. The Stanford Robotics Center’s list of medical robots in use today includes machines for surgery, rehabilitation, pharmacy automation, disinfection, and companionship. As robotic automation improves, whether in software or hardware form, it should merge more smoothly with day-to-day life.
7. Perfected Nanotechnology Is the Future of Wellness
Nanotechnology is the most futuristic technology on this list, and it’s still in its early stages. But this field is also the one that might have the greatest impact on health and wellness.
For example, Nanobiotix, a leading company in nanomedicine, is developing NBTXR3, a so-called radiohancer that would amplify the effects of radiotherapy on cancerous tumors.
Unfortunately, there are two major challenges with current nanotechnology concepts, according to the International Bar Association: the occasional toxic effects of nanoparticles on the human body and the socio-political debate on whether this technology should ever go mainstream.
It will take years to make nanotech completely safe to use and regularly accessible. But once medical and legal safeguards are in place along with a widespread understanding of how the technology works, society might see immense benefits.
Wellness Is Better With Technology
There’s no doubt that tech products have revolutionized wellness in many ways, and health-related technology continues to evolve. Many people already use technological innovations to exercise, socialize, organize their lives, and tackle medical problems. While some technologies have a ways to go before the public can fully access them, the pace with which they evolve suggests that the future of health tech will be even more exciting.