It’s a question most baby boomers are asking themselves. However, recent research shows it’s time to stop asking and start acting.
A poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research revealed few Americans are planning for long-term care, despite the large numbers who will end up needing it. Government figures estimate seven in 10 aging adults will need long-term care, but only 20 percent of those surveyed thought they would require it.
To address our big title question, let’s break down this complicated issue into the different hurdles that often get in the way of finding an answer.
But I’m still in good health.
This is one of those delicate issues of timing. Discussing and making plans for your future can feel unnecessary when a state of declining health is nowhere in sight. However, the types of decisions that are involved in long-term care planning aren’t ones you want to be making in the moment.
Instead, it’s best to make plans while you are in good health. You want to be able to think clearly and advocate for yourself. If you consider your options now while you are still able to make choices, you are more likely to be satisfied.
But I’m still getting financially ready for my long-term plans.
Many organizations that serve older adults offer a broad range of options designed to appeal to adults of various means and stages of life. Your finances are obviously going to play a large role in your decisions for long-term care, so beginning your plans early can help give you a better idea of the big picture.
My family will take care of me.
Many people act as caregivers for older family members, whether it’s children for their parents or spouses for each other. While this situation works very well for some, it is important to talk over your plans with your loved one who would likely be assuming the position of caregiver. Since caregiving is a demanding role that can often put strain on a relationship, discussing your plans before there is a need for caregiving helps make sure everyone is on the same page.
If you’re a boomer who has not yet begun thinking about your options for long-term care, now is the time to start. You want to be in control of your options so you get the future you deserve.
For more information on available options for long-term care, visit us online at www.kendalnorthernohio.org.