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Communication

A recent survey discovered that nearly half (42%) of adults with living parents had not discussed anything about long-term senior care with their parents.  The senior population in the US is expected to double in the next 35 years, and many of those will require care and assistance.  While some of that cost will be funded by government programs, it is likely that some of the financial burden of care will fall on family members.  Yet many have not made the effort to open the lines of communication about this issue with their aging parents.

Why is this so?  Well, there could be several motivations.  One may be not wishing to think about a parent’s decline or mortality.  Another may be fear that the parent will be offended by acknowledgement of their aging.  Yet another may be a feeling that it is rude or inappropriate to discuss financial issues with a parent.  While these concerns and fears can be relevant, it is wise to overcome them and start the communication about this issue.  Having a plan before anything bad happens is better than ending up waiting until a life-changing, emotionally charged event occurs.   It will prevent having to go through the process of learning about the cost and care options too quickly and while under duress.

So what can be done?  ‘A Place for Mom’ outlines some steps that can help families start the conversation and planning before it is too late.

  • Share information. Talk with family about assets and where to find documentation of those assets, as well as who has or should have access to them.  That way the financial availabilities will be known beforehand and the affairs will be in order before it becomes an issue.
  • Speak with a Senior Living Advisor. This will help you to know what options are available and what is necessary for each level of care that may be required for your loved one in the future.  This knowledge will save valuable time and energy when the time comes to make a decision.
  • Speak with your financial advisor. A good financial advisor can help you to properly invest to generate additional income and avoid scams, which will ease the transition when the time comes.
  • Include senior care costs into your budget. Once you have some idea of what level of care will likely be required and how much it will likely cost, start budgeting for it so that you are not caught completely financially unawares.

These steps can help ease the stress and improve the quality of care when the time comes to make the transition, because you will have a plan already in place when the time comes.  While people often want to avoid difficult thoughts and discussions such as these, communication is essential to making sure that your loved one gets the best care they can when the time is right.

For more information or to ask about availability contact Unlimited Care Cottages today!

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