Easing the Elder Care Burden – 3 Tips

For many families, the thought of caring for an aging parent brings stress and strain. After all, we don’t take Elder Care Solution 101 in school, and many of us may have not grown up in a multi-generational household. It doesn’t have to be like that though. Elder Care can and should be a positive experience. Check out these tips for making caring for an aging parent the kind of experience that changes your life in a positive way.

1. Ask for help – Caring for an aging parent is a significant emotional, physical, and financial burden. Don’t play the martyr by doing everything yourself. Ask your daughter to sacrifice some of her social networking time to spend an hour with Grandma so you can take a long, hot bath.

2. Encourage social activities – A smart elder care solution includes helping your parent find social activities they’ll enjoy. Look in the local paper to find senior activities calendars. Adult day services are another option to consider. These centers allow Dad to stay with caregivers while you work or take a day to go fishing or shopping.

Don’t limit social activities to dropping Grandma off at the senior center, either. Institute a regular family game night, so you, your parent, and other relatives can play board games or put puzzles together. You might also invite him or her to watch your daughter’s volleyball practice.

Social activities are an important part of any caring for aging parent strategy, so don’t let transportation concerns stop your loved one from participating. Look in the city/municipal services section of the phone book to find public transportation for seniors. If those services aren’t available, ask friends and family members to pitch in and taxi Grandpa where he wants to be.

3. Communicate with the medical team – Doctors, nurses, and other health care givers are an important part of your elder care solution. If possible, accompany your loved one on doctor’s visits to make sure you and your parent understand any diagnoses or instructions. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you don’t understand something or if you and your parent disagree on what the doctor said.

Caring for an aging parent is also easier if you keep copies of health care information, such as insurance policies and medical records. Also keep a list of doctors and medications. Put the information in an easy-to-access place so you can get to it in an emergency.

If you’re involved in planning your family’s elder care solution, it’s also critical to make sure you understand how your parent’s health care coverage, including Medicare plans, work. Confused? The local agency on aging will direct you to resources that can help your family understand the process as well as make decisions. Caring for an aging parent doesn’t need to be a burden. Start down the path to a better elder care solution today.

Tips on How to Find an Affordable Dentist

It is always recommended that we visit our dentists at least twice a year, regardless whether you have existing dental problems or not. This is to keep our teeth and gums healthy. However, dental checkups and services can be costly. What if you do not have budget for such thing? Then, it is important that you know how to find an affordable dentist in your area.

Having healthy gums and strong teeth are as important as having a good hygiene. Imagine if you have discolored teeth and crooked teeth, will you be able to smile? Of course not! With white and cavity-free teeth, you will have no problem showing your gorgeous smile. Not only it helps you look good, it also make you feel good, thus increase your self-confidence.

However, finding affordable dentist nowadays can be hard especially if you do not have dental insurance. That is why a lot of people would only visit the dentist when they already have serious problems, almost or too late.

So, here are some tips on how you could find an affordable dentist to help you out. Check out each of them to get low cost or even free dental checkups.

  1. Visit your local dental societies. Check local societies in your area to gain access to nearby private clinics that offer affordable dentist and expensive dental care services. You may also want to call the ADA official site for a list of dental society records with their contact details.
  2. Visit dental schools. Do not expect it like a clinic-type of service though. Being a teaching institution, you will be given attention from a knowledgeable and competent dental apprentice. Dental schools pay extra attention to dental care so they often offer free checkups or cheaper price. For more information, you may visit the American Dental Association website for a complete list of dental schools.
  3. Obtain benefit of government lineup and financing. The Federal Health Resources and Service Administration provide line up along with its Bureau of Primary Health Care. The institution manages the organization of treatment centers nationwide. These clinics offers affordable dentist and even free medical and dental care services.

On the other hand, if you have all the requirements and the credentials for a discounted or no cost dental care for your state’s Medicaid plan, then you may want to avail it. The rules may vary from state to state though as some do not offer dental services. It is therefore important that you contact or visit the Medicaid website to find out more.

By following these tips, you will definitely find the right and most affordable dentist or dental clinics that will fit your budget.

Medicare Eligibility – Helpful Tips

At age 65, most people qualify for their Initial Enrollment period with Medicare. It’s during this time that you can buy a Medicare Supplement without having to answer health questions. Typically, you only get one Initial Enrollment period. It begins three months before the month of your Medicare eligibility and ends three months after the month of eligibility. The month of eligibility is the month of your 65th birthday, if you become eligible for Medicare because you are turning 65 years old.

The Initial Enrollment period is a great opportunity for people to get Medicare health insurance. That’s because, typically, insurance companies must use medical underwriting to determine whether to accept your application. However, if you enroll during your Initial Enrollment period, you can buy any Medicare Supplement policy (that’s available in your area) without having to answer health questions and insurers can’t deny issuance of your policy.

It’s important to note that people with Medicare, due to disability, will be eligible for a second Initial Enrollment period at age 65. The same way anyone else becoming eligible for Medicare, for the first time, qualifies at age 65.

In most cases, Medicare Supplements pay what Medicare doesn’t cover at the hospital and doctor’s office. However, Medicare Supplements do not cover the majority of prescription drugs.

For drug coverage, you should consider enrolling in a Medicare Prescription Drug plan. Also known as Part D, this is separate and voluntary insurance that may help lower your prescription drug out-of-pocket costs. As with Medicare Supplements, private insurance companies offer Part D drug plans.

Although Part D is deemed “voluntary”, there are consequences for not enrolling in a qualified drug plan when you first become eligible for Medicare. That penalty is about 32 cents per month for every month that you could have enrolled but didn’t. The penalty is a lifetime carry which often times surprises people.

It’s important to compare Medicare Supplement benefits and prices before you decide which plan is right for you. That’s because all Medicare Supplements are standardized which means the plans offered and the benefits in those plans are the same for all companies.

There can be big differences in the premiums that different insurance companies charge for exactly the same coverage. By shopping and comparing, you could save hundreds of dollars per year.

There is a free service that can help you choose wisely by providing you with a list of companies who offer the most coverage at the lowest price, in your area.