Survey finds Independent Living More a Concern than Dying for Elderly
Independent Living may not seem a big concern for people in their 30s but it is one of the primary concerns for the elderly. This week Pfizer and several partners launched a social media initiative named Get Old. This online community has been created to allow Americans to talk about issues of aging and how they are impacting individuals, families and society. The front of the site asks you to answer one simple question – “How Do You Feel About Getting Old?” The four answers include Optimistic, Angry, Prepared and Uneasy. The survey finds Independent Living More of a Concern than Dying for Elderly
A video that accompanies this talks about how we’re all living longer thanks to medical advancements. True, but does this really make us happier? According to a survey conducted by Gallup & Robinson and underwritten by Pfizer, it depends. The poll, which surveyed 1,017 people over age 18, found that 64 percent of respondents were more afraid of losing independence or living with pain or physical limitations than dying (7 percent) and that health had an impact on whether people were more or less optimistic about aging.
The issue of independence is big and a growing concern. Older Americans want to remain living in their own home as long as possible. But once that’s no longer possible, the question of alternative living situations is stressful. The survey also found that while 51 percent of those 18 to 65 would take a parent into their home, only 25 percent of those 65 and older wanted to live with a younger relative if they could no longer take care of themselves.
But what’s the alternative? Because we are indeed living longer, many people are out-living their money so high-priced assisted living facilities are not a financial option for many families. Nursing homes are even more expensive. The quality of care in some of these facilities is also questionable and isolation from friends and family can have serious effects on their health.
A new study released found that isolation and loneliness in the elderly can raise their risk of dying from heart disease or another cause.
While multigenerational living is common in many cultures already, it will become increasingly popular – and sometimes the only solution – for many Americans. But to make it appealing to older adults, there will need to still be some level of independence and privacy. Accessory dwelling units (ADUs) are becoming increasingly popular as the solution. PALS Built modular home additions are handicap accessible studio, 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom suites that can be attached on to an adult child’s home but are completely self-contained. They can be completely installed from start to finish in as little as 8 weeks and are a fraction of the cost of assisted living facilities or having a contractor remodel an existing home. For seniors it allows them to maintain their independence but live in a safe home environment close to their family or a relative.
How do you feel about growing older?