An Apple a Day . . .

by Bryce Vuncannon

 

The Apple corporation is best known for their advances in technology, but in recent years they have been pushing to incorporate healthcare into their products, something seen most notably in their Apple Watch series. The fifth watch in the most recent edition of the series has been updated with new software, including apps that detect noise, track menstrual cycles, and monitor heart rates.

The noise detection app is for meant to make the user aware of the potential for hearing loss from repeated exposure to loud noises; sounds over 90 decibels result in a notification on the watch warning of the potential for hearing loss. Often times, people only worry about hearing loss once it is too late, but Apple’s technology has provided a renewed awareness.

The Apple Watch can also now keep track of menstrual cycles. After inputting some standard information with the device, cycles can be tracked and predicted, with the device detecting any irregularities. Since these irregularities in the menstrual cycle could be a precursor to things such as infertility, osteoporosis, and menopause, the ability to detect and predict them is a significant breakthrough.

Another useful health function of the newest Apple Watch is the heart monitor; this application can detect heart rate abnormalities including AFib, slow heart rates and fast heart rates. For detecting AFib, the watch runs a thirty second test and if it detects any problems, it sends an alert to the wearer regarding their heart rate activity. If AFib is detected, a visit to your doctor is recommended as a precaution. To monitor heart rate speed, the owner of the watch inputs values that would be considered slow or fast heart rates. The watch constantly monitors heart rate, and if any of these values are met, it sends a notification to the wearer. Furthermore, all of these features come with the option to send your data to Apple to be a part of a study related to the general health of its users.

These are just a few of the most recent changes Apple has introduced to attempt to incorporate healthcare into its products. In the future, Apple hopes to continue making improvements to their watches in order to best help its users monitor their health, utilizing its technology.

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