Death is inevitable in life. A lot of people may deny it but almost everyone is afraid of dying. Death is one of the greatest mysteries in life. Science, philosophy and religion have all battled over a theory of what happens after you die. Euphemistic language also gives us distance from our discomfort with death. People who die are "no longer with us", have "passed", gone "to meet their Maker", and etc. Some of the discomfort with the death and dying process has come because death has been removed from common experience. Usually, we no longer die at home surrounded by family and friends, we now usually die at hospitals and other health care facilities instead of at home in comfort. About 6,500 people die in the United States every day and only a small fraction of that die at home. This lack of personal experience with death and dying only adds to our sense of trepidation and fear. It is human nature to try to avoid things we fear. Because we are afraid, we tend to avoid thinking about our own mortality. Thanks to medical advances in defeating sudden causes of death such as heart attacks and strokes, more of us are dying of so-called "incremental" illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, respiratory illnesses, and diabetes. As a result, many have been given the gift of time and the ability to shape their death and dying process. Many of us now have the luxury of expressing and recording medical care and financial wishes in advance. In addition, we can address personal issues like “ saying goodbye”.
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