Life is an intricate tapestry woven with unpredictable threads. Illnesses can strike unexpectedly, accidents can happen, and circumstances can change in the blink of an eye. You may be healthy in one moment and incapacitated in the next.
It is why you need to have a living will – a written legal document that specifies your medical preferences when you cannot express yourself due to incapacitation. It allows you to set down the kind of medical treatments or procedures you want, such as life support, resuscitation, pain relief and organ donation. Here is why you need a living will now.
You never know when an accident or illness might happen
You could be in a car crash, suffer a stroke or contract a life-threatening infection at any time. If you don’t have a living will, your doctors and family members might not know what you want them to do in such situations. It can be a pretty confusing and chaotic situation for everyone involved.
You can avoid conflicts and disputes among your family members
If you don’t have a living will, your relatives might have differing views on what kind of care you should receive. Some might want to prolong your life at all costs, while others want to respect your dignity and let you go peacefully. It can cause arguments and conflict and even lead to legal battles.
You can protect your autonomy and dignity
Without a living will, you might receive treatments you would not want. For example, you might be hooked up to life-sustaining machines that keep you alive but in constant pain or a vegetative state. Alternatively, you might be subjected to invasive procedures that violate your privacy or religious beliefs.
Take the necessary steps
Having a living will is not only important for the elderly or the terminally ill. It is important for everyone who values their well-being and that of their loved ones. A living will can give you peace of mind and empower you to choose your medical care.
Learning more about how living wills work and what you need to do to ensure the document is legally binding and enforceable can help you stay ahead of the uncertainties of life.