Tips & Advice
What is an urn?
An urn is a container that the remains of the deceased are put into after cremation. Usually the remains are put into a plastic bag or box right out of the crematorium, and the next of kin can choose to purchase an urn at their discretion.
Is a casket needed for cremation?
You do not need a casket for cremation. The only requirements for cremation are that the body must be put in a rigid, combustible container that is devoid of any metals (or other substances that are fire retardant). Make sure to check with your crematorium prior for any other details. There are also services that can be arranged far in advance of death that handle all of these details for you.
A crematorium is a facility with a designated cremation chamber, used to cremate the remains of the deceased down to ashes, or remains. The remains are given to the next of kin for transport to their final destination. Crematoriums are generally found at funeral homes or mortuaries.
How much does cremation cost?
Like any other service, there are variables involved in cremation services. Are you having it all handled by a funeral home or directly with the crematorium? Are you signed up with a service, such as the Neptune Society, which handles all of the details for cremation? All of these will affect the cost involved in cremations. The minimum you can expect to pay for cremation is around $500-$700, and prices go up from there, even as high as $5,000. You can quickly research your area to find practical quotes, because where you live can affect the costs, too. Many folks sign up in advance with a service which handles all of the details, which can be a blessing in a time of grieving.
What are the benefits of cremation?
The biggest benefit of a cremation is cost. Cremation can be far less expensive than having a traditional funeral and burial, which include cemetery fees, headstones or markers, caskets and the gravesite. Often people want to scatter the ashes somewhere on behalf of the deceased, which can be a meaningful gesture or family tradition. Cremation is very quick, versus the time needed for burial.
Cremation is the incineration of a deceased body in a designated cremation chamber, generally at a funeral home or mortuary. The high temperatures used in the cremations chamber reduce the body to its most basic elements, which results in a few cups of ashes, or remains. Once the body is cremated, the remains are usually put into a receptacle, like a plastic bag (which can be put into a variety of transport devices like a box or an urn), and given to the next of kin for transport to their final resting place.
Is assisted living the same as a nursing home?
An assisted living facility is not the same as a nursing home. Nursing homes provide skilled nursing care for those who suffer from conditions or disabilities that call for intensive, ongoing medical assistance. Assisted living facilities typically cater to seniors who need less medical care and who require a living situation that provides more independence than is typical at a nursing home.
However, some assisted living facilities also provide skilled nursing care for residents who need it. At several locations around the country, you can find independent living, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities all on the same campus, allowing residents to make a smoother transition from one to the other.
How much does it cost to live in an assisted living facility?
The cost of residing in an assisted living facility can vary based on location and the size of the unit being rented. The national median average for renting a one-bedroom apartment in an assisted living facility comes in at around $3,500 per month.
If you have long-term care insurance, this coverage will usually assist with the costs associated with residing in an assisted living facility. Some seniors who don't have long-term care insurance cover the costs associated with assisted living by selling their homes. In cases where a couple owns property and only one person in a couple requires assisted living, the partner who is remaining at home will sometimes take out a reverse mortgage on the property to cover costs.
What services are provided in assisted living facilities?
Assisted living facilities provide a wide range of services that can help seniors who have trouble handling tasks related to basic self-care. These facilities can provide daily meals, and assist with bathing, grooming, and toileting. They can help with basic housekeeping and laundry, and they also provide 24-hour security that creates a safe environment for seniors. Assisted living facilities can also provide seniors with easy access to transportation, and offer social programs that can help give seniors a sense of community.
Is assisted living covered by Medicare?
Medicare doesn't typically cover costs directly associated with assisted living. However, Medicare might be used to pay qualified healthcare costs for someone who is staying at an assisted living facility. These costs may include expenses associated with doctor visits and prescriptions.
While Medicare doesn't usually cover assisted living, it typically covers the costs directly associated with staying in a skilled nursing facility (also known as a nursing home). Medicare also commonly covers the cost of hiring a professional to provide home health care.