Long-Term Care Insurance


In the United States, seven out of ten seniors over age 65 will need some type of long-term care services during their lifetime, and approximately one-third of Americans will require care in a skilled nursing facility at some point in their lives due to changes in mobility, cognitive function, or both.

When an individual’s level of mobility or cognitive function begins to change, they usually require assistance in order to perform normal activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing, eating, and getting dressed. Aging may gradually reduce one’s ability to comfortably do certain activities, but an individual may require assistance with daily activities due to a serious illness, while recovering from an injury, or after being discharged from the hospital following surgery. Often, those healing from medical conditions or procedures require short-term assistance for a few months; in other cases, care may be required for a lifetime.

When help with ADLS is provided over an extended period of time, it is known as long-term care. The types of long-term care available range from regular home visits from a family member who helps with housekeeping and shopping to specialized and continuous medical care from licensed professionals in a skilled nursing facility.

No matter the recipient’s condition or the type or level of care they require, the need for long-term care brings with it a host of physical, emotional, and financial challenges, requiring care recipients and their loved ones to make difficult decisions. By planning ahead for potential long-term care needs, financial planning clients remove much of the stress for themselves and their families. Long-term care insurance (LTCi) provides many with that peace of mind.

The Need for Long-Term Care

  1. Strokes – Interruptions of the blood supply to a portion of the brain
  2. Recovery – From major surgeries
  3. Bone Fractures – Such as those resulting from falls
  4. Multiple Sclerosis (MS) – A chronic disease of the central nervous system which damages the insulating covers of nerve cells, altering the brain’s ability to send and receive nerve signals. MS affects each patient differently; the disease may result in vision problems, weakness, fatigue, and difficulties with speaking, writing, or mobility.
  5. Parkinson’s Disease – A progressive, degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that causes unintended or uncontrollable movements, balance issues, and eventually difficulty speaking and walking.
  6. Spinal Cord Injuries – Which often cause changes in sensation, mobility, and bodily function below the site of the injury
  7. Head Injuries – Which may result in mobility issues or cognitive impairments
  8. Dementia – The deterioration of mental faculties due to nerve cell damage in the brain, affects thinking and social capabilities to the point an individual cannot function on a daily basis without assistance. Dementia gradually erodes an individual’s ability to live independently; sufferers may frequently become lost or disoriented, forget to turn appliances off or on, or become unable to recognize and deal with hunger or other important body cues. Anxiety and depression are common in dementia patients. Alzheimer’s disease is considered a form of progressive dementia, but not all dementia is necessarily caused by Alzheimer’s disease.
  9. Alzheimer’s Disease – A progressive, degenerative disease causing brain cell connections and the cells themselves to degenerate and die, resulting in irreversible intellectual deterioration. Alzheimer’s disease often begins with impaired memory, followed by impaired thought and speech. Alzheimer’s disease is still considered a cognitive impairment, although it is a medical diagnosis that can be treated with medications and therapies.

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