There are a few quotes about aging that I’ve come to believe are true.
“Aging is an extraordinary process where you become the person you always should have been.” – David Bowie
“Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.” – Anonymous
“The longer I live, the more beautiful life becomes.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
The thing about aging is that it’s something most of us – if we’re lucky – will experience. The difference lies in how we go about it.
We are fortunate to live in a time where we have choices when it comes to our care and planning for the future. Some people take advantage of these options while others find it difficult to plan ahead.
For those people who are hesitant to take the next steps with regards to their long-term aging plan, I offer these points:
- The lifetime probability of becoming disabled in at least two activities of daily living or of being cognitively impaired is 68% for people age 65 and older. (Source)
- More than two-fifths (42%) of people age 65 and over reported a functional limitation. Eighteen percent had difficulty with 1-2 Activities of Daily Living. (Source)
- According to Genworth.com, the median monthly costs of care in the Bakersfield area is as follows:
These numbers are something we should all be thinking about sooner rather than later.
Long-Term Care Insurance
As with most things surrounding protecting loved ones and planning for the future, my passion for long-term care insurance comes from my own personal experience. My mom became quite ill around age 50. Prior to her illness, we had applied for Long-Term Care Insurance for her, but she was denied coverage. My mom suffered from depression, anxiety, Parkinson’s disease, and epilepsy. She was home bound for many years and required in home care. The onset of my mom’s illnesses began at approximately age 50 and she died at age 77. During that time, she lived in board and care homes, independent living facilities and shared an apartment with her wonderful caregiver, Mary Ann, in her final years.
As a result of this, I purchased Long-Term Care Insurance for myself at age 50 for a few reasons. Insurability was my first concern; I wanted to be sure to protect myself (as well as my husband and daughters) while I was still healthy and able to pass the underwriting guidelines. I also knew after my mother’s experience that she would have had many more options if she could have been covered by LTC insurance before she became ill.
Even a basic policy providing $3000/month would have been a huge help to provide her with comfortable surroundings. Had she decided to stay home, adult day care, a very popular option, is something we all would have benefited from and is often provided by LTC insurance. This social outing for people gives their caregivers a much-needed break, especially for chronic and long-term illnesses such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
The bottom line is that had she had Long-Term Care Insurance, it would have helped both her and her caregivers.
Women and Long-Term Care
While aging is something that affects both men and women, the toll it takes on women can be even greater. This graphic from Lincoln National Life Insurance Company illustrates the many issues surrounding LTC and women:
Where do you go from here?
Many times, we feel overwhelmed by what we don’t know and if you’ve been feeling that way about your Long-Term Care options or your financial future in general, I completely understand – thinking about the future can sometimes feel like too much.
But what if you were able to get the answers you needed to make informed decisions – whether it’s about you or a loved one? And what if you had a trusted professional to help you have those sometimes-difficult conversations with family members about future planning?
That’s what I’m here for. I’m here to help you work through possible future scenarios and make plans that will help protect you and your family. I want all of my clients to leave my office with a renewed sense of security. Even if you have questions about where to start, feel free to email me. I’m here to help you get on the right path and stay there.