As related to a nearby thread on Apple Watch and the experienced benefits of ECG and Apple Health for other TidBit(ters?-ties?), I totally forgot till just now (when a surprisingly already-tender bruise suddenly reminded me) that a couple folks here might be interested to know that Apple Watch Fall Detection actually works, and really damn well (maybe too well).
As embarrassing as it is to admit, I managed to fall in a restroom at the gym this evening, and somehow also managed to get myself wedged between the commode and the wall; I dinged my cheek bone on the porcelain (or maybe the flush handle/plumbing) on the way down, and my left elbow and knee got bumped pretty good; but worst of all, I got wedged in such a manner that my Apple Watch was trapped beneath my hip, and I didn’t hear it calling not only 911, but my emergency contacts.
Admittedly I was a bit disoriented, but most frustrating was that my Parkinson’s wouldn’t let me talk to my own muscles to get up and get myself out of the trap; I was facing the wrong way to reach the grab bars; I couldn’t get any leverage in the (thankfully flushed) bowl; I couldn’t even see my walker, which held my iPhone, from my porcelain and ceramic prison; but I was generally suppressing my panic remembering that I could always call for help to the stragglers still showering and dressing before closing time; that a staff member would surely be in to mop at some point; and that a loud 'Hey Siri… ’ was always an option.
To be totally honest, while it was definitely a selling point on the Series 4, I completely forgot I had even enabled FD in the first place; and while I could feel it tapping and vibrating the bejeezus out of my wrist for the first couple minutes I was on the floor, in my confused and slightly panicked state, I dismissed it as being an alarm or timer I forgot about (I often set timers for my workouts and PT).
Anyway, before I managed to get myself fully extracted and back on my feet, I started hearing lots of commotion in the locker room, and suddenly realized I was who these loud voices were asking if “Is anyone in distress?”, etc., and before I could reply – and make myself decent – a fireman… errr… fireperson was pounding on the stall door and looking under the partition.
Humiliating. Absolutely humiliating.
I was also shocked to learn that it had been over nine minutes between my fall and her discovery, so maybe I was more disoriented than I thought.
Of course there was lots of paramedic drama and multiple refusals for transport to the hospital (I already had too much hospital boredom food last weekend, thanks; I’m at the gym to swim it all back off); plus I had to figure out how many of my contacts had to be notified to stand down (that was a treat).
Thankfully I didn’t have to further suffer much of a germaphobic OCD panic attack, as Boulder does a great job of not letting the handicap stall floors get too disgusting, and, obviously, a second shower was merely a few yards away.
That reminds me, I had another fall (due to passing out from the pain of what turned out to be passing a gallstone) in July in my own shower while wearing my Series 3; thank goodness for that mistake (I usually have it on the charger in my office while showering), and I also couldn’t make my muscles respond to reach my oh-so-close-but-can’t-quite-snag-it panic button that lives in the shower; I have “housemates” on a separate floor, but they couldn’t hear me (and I’m not sure I was even able to make much sound through the continually spasming pain); when it finally occurred to me that I could just 'Hey Siri… ’ that beautiful black rectangle on my wrist, and rescue was there in mere minutes.
That time I happily took the ambulance ride – and the morphine, oh, thank you, morphine, Ativan, etc. – as that was already hour seven of excruciating, breathtaking, tear-streaming spasmodic pain, to the point where, as stated, I literally passed out from blinding, unbreathable agony (while seated, no less).
I had no idea I was passing a stone; I thought it was just yet another bizarre neuropathy/neuralgia my body has been experiencing these past few years. I’ve had some wicked injuries, but that, my friends, is something I wish on no one (well, maybe a couple of current world leaders).
I was shocked to hear from several mothers who also had passed gallstones, and they said they’d happily trade it for more childbirth. That really surprised me; as men, we are generally taught we are being babies for complaining about pain when mothers lord childbirth over our heads.
Anyway, buy an Apple Watch for yourself or anyone you consider a fall risk; that’s two demonstrations for me inside six months that it is pretty much a permanent part of my future.