When it comes to caring for a sick friend, sometimes our best intentions can go awry. For example, how many times have you tried to cheer someone up by minimizing their pain, illness or accident with a more devastating experience of your own? “I am so sorry that you broke your leg. I broke my leg skiing once and had to crawl to the first aid station!” Or perhaps your offer to do something on their behalf was met with, “I’m not an invalid, I can take care of myself!” The latter instance has happened to me. That is, by offering to help my sick friend without first asking if he wanted my help, I was actually making him feel more incompetent than he already felt from his illness.
If you are transitioning into becoming a caregiver or simply visiting a sick friend, you might want to brush up on caregiving etiquette by reading, “For Sick Friend: First Do No Harm,” WSJ April 13-14, 2013, C3. The article gives “10 Commandments for Conversing With A Sick Friend” that might help you avoid a very common illness known as ”foot in mouth syndrome.”
Dementia is the gradual detoriation of mental functioning that affects memory, thinking, language, judgment, behavior, and a person’s ability to perform normal daily activities. According to a study by the RAND Corporation published in the Wall Street Journal, “Dementia is one of the country’s most expensive medical conditions, costing the U.S. between $157 billion and $215 billion a year in medical care and other costs, such as lost wages for caregivers..” click here to read, “Dementia’s Cost to Nation Piles Up.”
More often than not, people with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (a form of dementia) are often cared for by spouses and children. The emotional, physical and financial effects of caregiving can be devistating on the caregiver and add to significant costs and demands on our health-care system. As one caregiver noted, ”These are hidden issues that…are wiping out families. It doesn’t stop at just the person with Alzheimer’s and their spouse. It’s going to the next generation.”
Congratulations! You are ready to retire. You have develop a solid plan with your finanical adviser, your estate is in order, you have long-term care plan, but wait! People are living much longer thanks to advances in medicine. What if you need extended long-term care insurance? What if your children still need help? What if the tax code changes?
No one has a crystal ball but retirement is a long journey and you are likely to run into these and other unexpected expenses in your Golden Years. Make sure you have the right guidance to assist you and enough money in your budget to manage unforeseen expenses. Click on this U.S. News article to learn more: 7 Unexpected Retirement Expenses.