Garmin, Medic Alert and Autistic Health
Oddly enough most people don’t know that Medic Alert Canada is actually partnered with Garmin Canada! The partnership has been out awhile but it’s amazing how neither organization seems to openly promote this. It seems silly not to promote it since Garmin itself has many health tracking benefits including Stress levels, body battery, and so much more!
However Medic Alert Canada only has the basic models on their website. In a way it makes sense since they are cheaper but honestly they should more models than just Vivosmart and Vivmove, like the Venu series or even the Forerunners. However you can purchase those models online from Amazon, BestBuy or MEC. Then just purchase the watch band accessory from Medic Alert and attach it to your watch band. The only downside is you can’t purchase the Autistic coloured accessory without purchasing a band as well. I don’t need a silicone or Velcro band though.. just the accessory.
Medic Alert Canada works in two different ways. The first is the band itself which contains the user’s medic alert ID number and the most relevant health data such as allergies, diabetes, etc. My ID for example has the fact that I have von Willebrand’s Disease Type 1 so I can’t be given blood thinners. This is extremely valuable if I’m hit by a car and first responders need to know something. They can also phone the 24/7 hotline which will give the hospital or first responder more information if needed. That’s where my Autism Diagnosis is listed as well as some other useful information,
While Medic Alert has many different non Autistic IDs the bands in the Autism section are quite limited. It’s almost as if they don’t think Autistics want fancy bands that can easily be mistaken for jewellery. Anyway Medic Alert saves lives with this twofold approach of getting important information to hospitals and first responders when the user is unable to answer questions.
Earlier I mentioned the partnership with Garmin. Garmin has grown substantially from being a pure athlete device to having devices for anyone that wants to be active. The Forerunners are of course more runner focused, while the Instinct and Fenix series are more geared for outdoor hikes, climbing and life in general. It should be noted that the Fenix series is the premium top of the line Garmin Devices and that the Fenix 7 just came out this year.
How does Garmin help Autistics? Good question and I would answer that the body battery and stress level monitoring is probably the best and can be found on the Venu series and other models that are cheaper than the Fenix series. The new Vivosmart 5 for instance is $199 CAD and features these options. I personally have found that the lower the body battery the more brain fog that I have. I can also check my stress levels to better pinpoint things that are stressing me out, something I can’t usually tell on my own. DesFit does a great job of going through the Vivosmart 5 Here.
It should be noted that many of Garmin’s devices also have safety features of their own. These can alert your contacts if you crash your bike, or if you feel threatened on your way home from work. This works by sending your contacts an email with a link to your location. Only the Forerunner 945 LTE can contact emergency services. Although the Venu 2 Plus can make phone calls to 911 but it has to be connected to your phone and it’s the only one currently with a microphone.
I find the Garmin Connect app to be really useful with tons of information and no silly subscriptions to access my own data the way other fitness programs (Fitbit) do. I’m using a Fenix 6s pro that I got for $48/month from Amazon. After I finish a workout, I get a recommended number of hours to wait before I do a hard workout again (they are called Recovery hours). This is another way that Garmin helps me, as it makes sure that I don’t overdo it and hurt myself. While things like Garmin and MyFitnessPal do help, it’s very important to remember that they are just tools, and should not rule your life like the One Ring.
So hopefully you learned something new in this post that you didn’t know before. There are many more ways that Garmin can be used to stay healthy but tried to focus on the features that donn’t often get mentioned. For those interested DesFit did a comparison between Apple and Garmin in a video Here