Look Out: An Aging Tsunami is Coming!
by David Noreen
Posted: May 30, 2015
The "silver tsunami" has serious implications for the future…
Dave Noreen wrote this article in 2011 shortly after the tragic tsunami in Japan. The point of the arficle is just as relevant today. He submitted it to help us with the relaunch of SeniorLifestyle in May 2015.
O.K…..it’s not on a par with the recent tragedy in Japan. Nonetheless, this “silver tsunami” has serious implications for the 65 plus population in the future. The 75th anniversary of retiring “boomers”, (born in 1946), signaled the growing age wave.
While Americans are living longer and healthier lives, there is downside, believe it or not. These bonus years also bring some unique concerns. Longevity also translates into higher healthcare costs, more susceptibility to many chronic illnesses and the possible onset of dementia. (It’s not a rosy picture, as more and more of us move beyond “the threescore
and twenty years”).
And that’s not all. We are already aware of how personal budgets have to be stretched to meet insurance, prescriptions and the costs of daily living. Some of our own residents are facing the difficulty of managing on lower returns of fixed incomes, and are concerned for their futures. Nationally, current conversation about future social security coverage offers a pretty bleak outlook. As one of my retired professors with health and financial issues told me, “Dave, it’s no fun growing old”.
One might ask, “Is there anything for us to hope for as this silver tsunami advances, with even more serious implications for our children and grandchildren?
There are those who place their hopes in social change,…a different political and economic climate, with new benefits and resources to serve the older population. Don’t count on that! Changing laws and policies take time and rarely match the promises given.
The retirement community I live in places emphasis on wellness and life fulfillment has a built-in advocacy for facing the multiple issues of aging. Add to this a commitment to care for those whose resources are being depleted due to health needs, this Village has been preparing itself for the tsunami. But it calls for a continued commitment to these values, and to take social responsibility to support programs which aid those who are not as fortunate as us.
Something to think about.
Rev. David Noreen is retired, but remains active in senior ministry, especially in the area of stewardship. He served as Administrator of Christian Education for the Evangelical Covenant Church and before that as a pastor in the Midwest.• E-mail the author (moc.loa@neerond*)
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