Economics and Health Are Critical
Issues for women over 60 can differ in various ways compared to those faced by men or younger women. Some of these differences can include:
- Health: Women over 60 tend to face unique health challenges, such as menopause, osteoporosis, and increased risk of certain diseases.
- Lifestyle: Women over 60 may be more likely to be single or widowed, leading to a change in their daily routine and support system.
- Financial: Women over 60 may have limited financial resources and may face retirement and pension challenges.
- Social: Older women may experience social isolation and loneliness, leading to mental health issues.
- Career: Women over 60 may face discrimination in the workplace and difficulty finding new employment.
These are just some of the ways in which issues can differ for women over 60. It's important to acknowledge and address these differences in order to ensure that older women receive the support and resources they need to lead fulfilling lives.
As women move into their 60s and beyond, economics and health are two of the most critical challenges for women as they age, especially in the face of declining sources of social support.
Unless women are working or own a business, their income is largely dependent on pensions or social security and investment income. The volatility of the stock market and uncertainty around Social Security and Medicare benefits can make it difficult for women to plan for their retirement and ensure their financial security.
Many women start a business as an economic necessity. In most cases, starting a business requires a ramp-up period and, unless you have a business blueprint, entrepreneurship may require a trial-and-error process which is not cost-effective. I wrote Gold in the Golden Years for that very reason. It provides a blueprint for starting and growing a business.
All businesses take time and dedication which is why it is difficult to start a business while you have a career. If you have the time and money available to start a business while you are still working in a career, you have better economic stability.
If your business doesn’t work out, you have the expenses of the business you started, but you retained your salaried job and mitigated the risk. If the business does take off, you can segway over to the business.
Healthcare costs, the rate of recovery from a serious medical condition, and the ability to obtain care while you are recuperating are the biggest challenges.
The Medicare eligibility age is 65, but there are additional eligibility factors. If you are within two years of age 65, you should begin your research.
Another often unknown fact is that the Medicare cost varies by your income. If you enroll in Medicare at age 65 and you are working or have a higher income from another source, your Medicare will cost you more per month. I believe Medicare is still well worth it due to the high rate of healthcare costs.
The age limit of Medicare is one of the primary reasons women, especially single women, do not retire until they qualify for Medicare.
The cost of healthcare is also a significant concern, especially for those who are not yet eligible for Medicare. These challenges highlight the importance of advocating for policies and systems that support women's health and financial stability as they age.
As people age, they tend to face more health challenges. This can be especially difficult for single women, who may have limited support systems to help them manage these issues.
Women also tend to live longer than men, currently estimated as five years longer, which means they may face more health problems later in life.
According to ETNT Health, the most common age-related health problems after 60 include:
- Dental health
- Pelvic floor issues including urinary incontinence
- Shortness of breath
- Leg swelling
- Sleep issues
- Chronic aches, pains, and body stiffness
- Balance issues
- Leg cramps
- Decreasing height and worsening posture
It's important to consider your options for post-surgery or post-illness care, as it can have a significant impact on your recovery. If you don't have a family member, spouse, or friend who can provide the necessary care, it's important to understand your other options and the associated costs.
It is also important to be realistic about the time availability of your family member, spouse or friend who may have children to supervise, a restrictive job, they may not be physically or emotionally able to provide the level of care you need.
In that case, your alternatives are limited, often by cost. You could use a rehabilitation facility, but there are probably insurance limitations on the length of time the cost will be covered. You could employ a professional caregiving service, but it will be costly, depending on the type and amount of care needed.
Before undergoing any surgery or major treatment, it's recommended to discuss your care options with your doctor and understand the estimated length of time you'll need help, insurance coverage, and approximate costs of care. It's important to have a plan in place to ensure the best possible outcome and minimize stress during your recovery period.