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Apple Watches are amazing devices with many benefits, but one of the most underrated features is hard fall detection. When enabled, this feature can detect if you've had a hard fall and send an alert to your emergency contacts. This could save your life if you cannot get up after a fall. In this article, we will take a close look at this feature and check out the reasons why you should enable it on your Apple Watch.

What is Hard Fall Detection and how does it work on Apple Watches?

As the name suggests, hard fall detection is a feature that can detect if you've had a hard fall while wearing an Apple Watch. This is done by monitoring your movement and acceleration data.

The watch carries out actions of tapping on your wrist, sounding an alarm, and displaying an alert if it senses a hard fall. It then proceeds to either contact emergency services or cancel the alert.

If your Apple Watch senses that you're in motion, it will wait for you to respond to its alerts and will not automatically contact emergency services. But if it senses that you've been motionless for approximately a minute, it will automatically call emergency services.

When the call connects, your Apple Watch plays an audio message that informs emergency services about a hard fall and then provides your current location as latitude and longitude coordinates.

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To cancel the alert, you can minimize the screen by pressing the Digital Crown, tapping "close" in the upper-left corner, or tapping "I'm OK." (In a situation where you don't want your emergency contacts notified). Otherwise, drag the "Emergency SOS" slider to the right to call emergency services by yourself.

When the call is finished, your watch also notifies your emergency contacts of your location so they can know that it detected a hard fall and has contacted emergency services. Your Medical ID is obtained from the emergency contacts in your watch.

Hard fall detection is available on Apple Watch SE and Apple series 4 or later models. If wrist detection is disabled, the watch will not automatically attempt to contact emergency services after a hard fall.

If you set up your Apple Watch (or add it to the Health app on iPhone) with a birthdate that shows that you are 55 or older, fall detection will be enabled by default. If you are between 18 and 55, you will have to turn on fall detection manually.

A Slip from a banana peel is capable of being detected by an Apple Watch

Top benefits of having hard fall detection enabled on your Apple Watch

Here are 8 benefits of having hard fall detection enabled on your Apple Watch:

  • Increased health safety – One of the biggest benefits of having hard fall detection enabled is that it can help keep you safe. This means you do not have to worry about a health emergency if you collapse.
  • Peace of mind – Another big benefit of hard fall detection is that it can give you peace of mind. Knowing that this feature is enabled can help you feel safer that you can get help in the event of an emergency.
  • Enhanced independence – If you're a senior citizen, hard fall detection can help you maintain your independence. It frees up your family and loved ones from worrying and wanting to be around you in case of a health emergency.
  • Faster response times – With hard fall detection, emergency responders will be able to get to you faster if you've had a fall rather than the added time of trying to get to a phone (if you can).
  • Better coordination of rescue – Hard fall detection can help coordinate rescue efforts by notifying emergency services and multiple emergency contacts at once and automating the whole process.
  • Precision in detection – This feature is very accurate and can detect hard falls with great precision.
  • Reduced health bills – Hard fall detection can ultimately help reduce costs by preventing further deterioration of the health condition that may develop if rescue is unavailable without the feature.

As you can see, there are many benefits to having hard fall detection enabled on your Apple Watch. We highly recommend enabling if you're not currently using this feature.

What is wrist detection on Apple Watches?
Wrist detection is a feature on Apple Watches that allows it to know when it is being worn. This is done by using sensors on the Apple Watch

Examples of how hard fall detection has helped people in the past

In 2018, a man in his 80s was out for a walk when he slumped and hit his head. He was knocked unconscious and couldn't get up. Fortunately, he had his Apple Watch's fall detection switched on. The watch detected the fall and immediately notified his emergency contacts. They were able to respond quickly, and he received urgent medical care.

Also, in 2019, a woman in her 60s slipped and fell down hard while cooking in her kitchen. She was knocked unconscious and couldn't get up. Luckily, she had hard fall detection enabled on the Apple Watch she was wearing. The watch detected the fall and alerted her emergency contacts and emergency services. They were able to quickly come to her aid and help her get medical attention.

Emergency services contacted by fall detection of an Apple Watch rushing to the aid of a victim 

How to enable hard fall detection on your Apple Watch

You can enable hard fall detection if you have an Apple Watch Series 4 or later. Here's how:

  • Open the "Settings" app on your iPhone.
  • Tap "Emergency SOS."
  • Toggle on the "Fall Detection" switch.
  • To turn off the feature, repeat the same process and toggle off the "fall detection" switch.

Now, if you fall and your watch detects the impact, it will automatically call emergency services and send a message to your emergency contacts. You can also set up medical ID information in the Emergency SOS settings, so those first responders will have access to your important medical information in case of an accident.

Enabling hard fall detection is a quick and easy way to give yourself some extra protection in case of an accident.   It could just be the difference between getting help quickly and being stranded without assistance.

Amazing Health Benefits of Apple Watch to the Elderly
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Frequently Asked Questions about hard fall detection on Apple Watches

Q: Will hard fall detection work if I'm not wearing my watch?

A: No, the feature only works if you're wearing your watch. If your watch is not on your wrist, it will not be able to detect a fall.

Q: What if I accidentally trigger emergency services with a false positive?

A: If you accidentally trigger emergency services, you can cancel the call by tapping the "Stop" button on the screen. You'll then have the option to call back or send a message to your emergency contacts.

Q: Does hard fall detection work with all Apple Watches?

A: No, the feature is only available on Apple Watch Series 4 and later.

Q: Is hard fall detection accurate?

A: The feature is designed to be as accurate as possible, but it's not perfect. Sometimes, it may misidentify a fall or fail to detect one altogether. However, it's still a valuable safety feature that can help you in the event of a serious accident.

Can I swim with my Apple Watch Series 3?
Yes, you can. The watch is water-resistant up to 50 meters but is not recommended for use in waters with high velocity and pressure.

Final thoughts about the amazing benefits of having hard fall detection enabled on your watch

As you can see, enabling hard fall detection on your Apple Watch is a great way to increase your health safety and security. The feature is accurate and can help you get the medical attention you need in the event of a serious fall. We highly recommend enabling this feature if you have an Apple Watch SE or Apple Watch Series 4 or later. Thanks for reading

Hope you enjoyed the article.

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