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Three Important Conversations To Have With Aging Parents

Our parents spend years caring for us, teaching us, and guiding us from infancy to adulthood. Once adults, we can make our own decisions, plan for our future, and care for our self and our loved ones. Sadly, over time our parents may reach a stage where their own health, mobility, finances, and living situation may require them to make major life changes. While it may be difficult for adult children to discuss these sensitive topics with their aging parents, it is absolutely critical to make sure our loved ones have the safety, care, and support they need to thrive in their senior years. Today's blog post highlights three important conversations we should have with our aging parents for their overall safety and well-being.

Driving Safety

One of the first conversations that adults should have with their aging parents is in regards to their ability to safely operate a vehicle. Although driving a car or truck can provide a sense of independence and mobility for senior citizens, it can pose a large safety risk. According to the Federal Highway Administration, there are over 35 million drivers in the United States age 65 and older. A large number of these older drivers have impaired vision, and many exhibit slower reflexes as they age, both of which can hinder their driving ability and increase their likelihood for accidents, injuries, and even death. In addition, it may be more costly to obtain required auto insurance as they have a higher risk of car accidents. If a parent is no longer able to safely drive a car or truck, they may have to consider selling their vehicles and finding alternate modes of transportation.

Living Arrangements

Aging parents often dream of living in their home well into their golden years, but poor finances, health issues and mobility restrictions may make independent living difficult. Senior citizens may find it challenging and even risky to perform such tasks as climbing stairs in their home, cooking meals, maintaining their yard, or keeping up with housecleaning. Studies have shown an increased risk of house fires, slips and falls, and serious accidents as homeowners and renters age.  In addition, aging parents may have issues with memory loss or dementia that put them at a higher risk for accidents or wandering off.  Adult children may need to discuss with their parents alternate living arrangements, such as a move to a retirement community, assisted living center, nursing home, or with family members to ensure their best care and safety.

Finances and Estate Planning

Finally, another important conversation adult children should have with aging parents concerns their finances and estate planning. Sadly, many adult children learn too late that their parents are not prepared financially for their retirement years, with no nest egg for their future care and expenses. This can leave their grown children in a dire financial situation as well, since they may not have the financial resources to help support their parents care, medical expenses, or burial costs. Adult children and their parents benefit from having in-depth and honest conversations about their financial future, life insurance options, burial wishes, and other end-of-life decisions.

Although these conversations with aging parents can be delicate and at times painful, it is critically important for senior citizens and their grown children to all be on the same page about their financial situation, living situations, and driving abilities to ensure long-term safety and quality of life. Aegis can also help families as they make financial decisions regarding their care and estate planning, with quality insurance options for Homeowners Insurance, Auto Insurance, and Life Insurance. Contact the friendly and knowledgeable team at Aegis at 713-850-7622 for more information, or go online to request a free quote!

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