Early Onset Dementia: What YOU Need to Know from the Wendy Williams and Bruce Willis Diagnoses

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With dementia diagnoses projected to triple by 2050, it is no surprise that the disease is making headlines. On February 22, 2024, Wendy Williams received a diagnosis of aphasia and frontotemporal dementia. A disease Bruce Willis has been working through since 2022.

It is always important to educate yourself, be prepared and take steps to secure your family’s financial future. Let’s explore this rising disease, its symptoms and implications on physical and financial health.

What is Aphasia?

The Mayo Clinic defines aphasia as a rare nervous system condition that disrupts communication, causing difficulty in expressing thoughts and comprehending words. The disease progresses over time and eventually causes the loss of ability to speak and write.

Some of the symptoms include having trouble understanding spoken or written language, struggling to speak and name objects and the inability to repeat phrases. Eventually, this disease causes individuals to have difficulty managing day-to-day tasks and carrying out everyday activities.

Steps to Take

Whether you are caring for a parent with dementia or simply gathering preventative information for yourself, taking action is a great way to feel prepared for the unknown and unexpected.

Have a Long-Term Care Plan

7 in 10 people will need long-term care in their later years and dementia can expedite that need. As aging progresses, there are day-to-day tasks that are harder to accomplish and those with aphasia may hit that point sooner than others.

Long-term care can be a bit taxing to figure out. From the manual coordination piece to the expense, it can be stressful. Having a plan, before a crisis occurs, can reduce anxiety and the financial burden. Not to mention, getting long-term care insurance after a major health diagnosis is quite difficult.

Whether it is putting a little extra money aside in an HSA for the future or looking into long-term care insurance proactively, take control of your health and financial future with a long-term care plan.

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Talk About Final Wishes

End-of-life conversations are not the most pleasant topic, although they can save quite a bit of heartache in an unfortunate situation. 92% of Americans say it is important to discuss their wishes for end-of-life care but only 32% have had the conversation.

Especially in a scenario where speech or language is degenerating, securing an end-of-life plan proactively would be extra beneficial. You have a higher chance of having a say in your later years if you determine a few things like:

  • Who will make medical decisions if you are unable to?
  • How much independence do you want to maintain?
  • Who will manage your trust when you pass away?
  • How will your affairs be handled?

Not only will discerning these things put you at ease, but it also is a great way to show your loved ones you care. Putting your wishes in writing and sharing them is a thoughtful and helpful step to securing stability for your family.

Secure Life Insurance

Lastly, obtain a life insurance policy. Life insurance is one way to ensure your financial future regardless of your future health challenges. Securing a policy allows your loved ones to have funds available to them after you pass away. Create an overwhelming sense of peace by deciding on a life insurance policy that is right for your family’s needs.

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