Over 50? Time to Get Wise About Long-Term Care
Myth 1: I won’t need it.
About 70% of Americans over 65 will need some kind of help with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) that are non-medical, such as getting in and out of bed and walking, bathing and showering, dressing, eating, using the bathroom, as they age. It may be due to an illness, chronic disease or disability. But often, the care is required because of the natural decline due to aging of one’s eyesight, hearing, strength, balance or mobility. Help with ADLs comes in many forms and is generally known as long-term care, the need for which can last for a short time or for several years.
Myth 2: It means an insurance policy.
Many people confuse “long-term care planning” with “long-term care insurance plans,” but they are not the same. Insurance is just one of many options people consider for covering the costs of long-term care. But, long-term care planning means developing your personal strategy and making decisions now for how you want a range of things to be handled later when you or a loved one is in need of long-term care services.
Typically, your long-term care strategy should consider where you would live, how you would pay for care, getting legal documents in order, such as an advanced care directive, and discussing your decisions and preferences with family members.