New Survey Shows That Many Aging Parents Aren’t Taking Their Health Seriously


seniors dont take their heath seriouslyA new survey conducted by the National Council on Aging, UnitedHealthcare, and USA Today surveyed 4,000 adults to get a clear view of American seniors perspectives on aging.

While many of the results aren’t surprising–most seniors are committed to maintaing a high quality of life–some results seem to be contradictory. For example, 60% of seniors expect to maintain their current health for the next five to 10 years, yet 65% are living with two or more chronic health conditions.

Below are some of the key findings from the survey.

  • 40% of seniors believe that staying connected to friends and family is the most important element to maintaining a high quality of life.
  • 30% believe that having financial means is the most important element to maintaining a high quality of life during their senior years.
  • The survey found that seniors who focus on taking care of their health are more optimistic about aging.
  • 64% of the aforementioned optimistic seniors have set one or more specific health goals in the past year, in contrast to 47% of the senior population who have no such health goals.
  • 71% of seniors feel that their community is responsive to their needs, but only 49% feel that their community is prepared for the future needs of the growing senior population.
  • Likewise, 70% stated that they were not encouraged by health care providers to attend community programs aimed at promoting senior health.

Overall, there is reason to be concerned. Although most seniors are optimistic about their overall health, many are not taking the necessary steps to maintain or improve their current health, or to properly manage a chronic condition. Forbes even goes so far as to say that our seniors are living in la-la land.

In the long run, the lax attitude of seniors towards their health could lead to the rest of us paying the price in the form of Medicare costs and time/money from family caregivers. The best thing we can do is to have a heart-to-heart talk with our aging parents and loved ones about the reality of aging, stressing the importance of proactively treating any health problems as they arise.

Physicians’ Choice Private Duty Assisted Living–currently serving Omaha, Eastern Nebraska and Western Iowa–provides seniors and their families a complete understanding of geriatric care options and helps families maneuver through the challenges of the system. Get your free Cost Comparison guide by clicking here. Or contact us for a free consultation or just to say hello!

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