Apple Watches have many functions that make life easier, but one dad is particularly grateful for the advanced technology because it’s helped his son with autism.
Scott Bennett has a son Sam, 21, who is autistic. Though social, Sam has often struggled to speak using his “inside voice.”
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“He just never had the ability to modulate it,” the father-of-three told People. “For years we’ve been struggling with this, since he started talking… and voice level is really, really, really loud.”
Scott will always ask Sam to keep his voice down, but he struggles to maintain an acceptable volume long-term.
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“We just can’t go places. He’s also got a short attention span, too, so you put all these things together, and it’s hard on the family,” Scott said. “You learn to adapt, but it’s always tough, and especially for a guy like me who thrives on silence, I got blessed with the loudest human being on the planet.”
Apple Watch Helps Man’s Son with Autism Modulate Voice Volume
But the Apple Watch changed things dramatically. Scott discovered the watch’s Noise app, which measures decibel levels and can alert the user if it’s getting too high by going from green to yellow.
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Scott showed it to Sam who immediately responded to the changing colors, quieting his voice as soon as he saw it go yellow.
“It’s just made things a lot more tolerable for us and for our family,” Scott said. “It raises the possibility that maybe someday I could take him to a golf tournament, ‘cause I’d love that.”
Though Scott wishes the technology was around when Sam was little, he has made an effort to share his new tools with other parents with children with special needs and has gotten many positive results after sharing the news on Facebook.
“There’s 5 million of these folks [with special needs] out there, and every one of them is different, and has different issues and needs. And it’s really hard to make use of all the technology that’s out there,” Scott says. “I’m sure there’s other things out there that my son could benefit from, it’s just, who has the time to go through them and sort through all these things? I just happened to see one thing and it really made a difference for me, and I’m excited enough to want to share with other people.”
When I’m not hanging out with my three-year-old and husband in Brooklyn, I’m busy writing stories for Mamas Uncut and managing PR + Marketing for Magnolia Bakery, based in New York City. On weekends, you can usually find me at a local park or playground pushing my daughter on the swings, “researching” the best almond croissants in Park Slope or launching into impromptu family dance parties at home, the sidewalk or, every once in awhile, a restaurant bathroom. I’m still trying to master the whole parenting thing, but I have learned that copious amounts of coffee, humor and humility are involved on a daily basis.
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