5 Most Helpful Resources for Living Independently as a Senior

Living independently as a senior is a dream for most of us, but it comes with its own challenges.

More than 40% of seniors in America experience loneliness on a regular basis, while similar numbers also suffer from poor healthcare and money management.

If you want to live out your golden years in happiness and security, help for seniors is widely available. With the right resources for living as a senior at your disposal, retirement will be a breeze.

Here are the top resources for seniors in America. 

The National Council on Aging 

If you’re looking for a one-stop-shop when it comes to self-help for the elderly, the National Council on Aging (NCOA) is the best place to start.

This government-supported agency works with nonprofits and community programs across the country to provide help for seniors.

Here you can access financial planning, medical advice, social programs, and transport services no matter where you are.

All their services are completely free to access, meaning you can get the advice you need, no matter your financial position. 

Senior Select 

If you’re in need of the right medical care for you, then Senior Select is one of the best products for the elderly living alone.

With Senior Select, you can receive comprehensive, expert advice on your medical entitlements.

If you are eligible for Medicare, the team at Senior Select will sit down with you and make sure you know what all your benefits are. This means you’ll know exactly the kind of care you deserve, supported by experts in the industry.

You’ll also learn how to save money by being matched with the best medical plans for your budget. In old age, medical care is too important to ignore.

A resource like this can be a life-changer on the road to independence. 

Eldercare Locator 

Those searching for “community resources near me” need look no further than Eldercare Locator.

This free service, run by the US Administration on Aging, will connect elderly people to all the services they could possibly need.

If you need house repairs done, Eldercare Locator will get you in touch with the right people. If you need caregiving service, they will provide. Or, if you’re in need of legal advice to discuss things such as wills and life insurance policies, they will gladly send a lawyer your way as well.

Senior Community Service Employment Program 

If you’re a low-income senior in need of a part-time job, the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) is here to help.

They provide paid, undemanding work to thousands of seniors every year.

You could be given a role in your previous career field or a manageable part-time job in a sector such as retail or administration. All you need to do is check your eligibility. 

Meals on Wheels America 

Meals on Wheels is one of the most well-known seniors’ community services in America.

Their 2 million volunteers ensure that elderly people receive nutritious, balanced, and delicious meals every single day.

They will also conduct safety checks and ask if you need any other resources to help you live your best independent life.

Meals on Wheels is a national institution that all seniors should be aware of. 

These Are Great Resources for Living Independently

These are just a few of the essential resources for living independently as a senior.

To learn how to better manage your money for now and later, make sure to check out our finance section for expert budgeting advice, whatever your age. 

7 Travel Tips to Remember Before Visiting Georgia

Nestled on The Black Sea, this unsung country of the Caucasus region is an interesting mix of European and Asian cultures. It is also known for having some of the most beautiful and diverse landscapes in the area. However, if you plan on visiting Georgia there a few things you should be aware of before you pack your bags.

Here are seven things to know before you head to Georgia.

1. Learn Some Georgian or Russian

Yes, in the larger cities you will find quite a few people who speak English. But if you plan on traveling out into the country, which we highly recommend, then you should learn at least a few phrases in Georgian. If that seems too hard, then try to pick up a little Russian, since most people will speak that too. 

2. Know When To Go

Knowing when to travel can help make your trip more enjoyable. Thankfully the climate is pretty diverse. The winters can get cold and snow, the summers warm verging on hot, and spring and autumn are lovely and temperate; so, it really just depends on your personal preference. 

3. Transportation Can Be Interesting

Getting to and from the major cities shouldn’t be too much of a problem after all the train system is pretty good. But if you want to venture into the country, you will need to take a minibus and the stations can be disorganized and chaotic. This is where your Russian or Georgian will come in handy.

4. Churches and Monasteries

Georgia is a deeply religious country, following Orthodox Christianity. So, if you are a fan of architecture, you are going to love all the different styles of religious buildings from different eras, since the religion was first introduced to the country in the 4th century. Be warned though, in the more remote areas, churches tend to be on hills; so be prepared for a bit of a hike to get to them. 

5. It Is a Foodie’s Dream

Thanks to the fact that Georgia straddles both Europe and Asia the food is diverse with a variety of tastes to please any palate. Though it does tend to be more about meat and pastries, there are plenty of vegetarian options as well.

6. Carry Cash

In the larger cities, like the capital Tbilisi, you will be able to use your card a bit more often. However, much of the country is still cash only. So, to make sure you don’t run into any hassles keep a little money with you at all times. 

7. Museums Are Cheap

Compared to other major European cities, Tbilisi’s museums’ entrance prices are beyond reasonable. In fact, the average price of a ticket is about 1.25. So, if you are interested in seeing amazing works of art for next to nothing, you are going to be over the moon.

Visiting Georgia

While it might not get as much press as Russia or Ukraine, this small but diverse former Soviet State is well worth a visit. 

For more tips on inexpensive countries to visit, check out the rest of our blog.

Brand Name vs Generic Drugs: Which Is Better?

Do you buy generic or store-brand products for your family?

Some off-brand crackers, cookies, and sodas taste exactly the same as their name-brand counterparts, while others are decidedly inferior knockoffs. Chances are that you’ve learned through trial and error exactly which is which! 

Of course, there are also plenty of people who turn up their noses at generics and insist on paying a premium for grocery items. That’s especially true when it comes to prescription medications. Today we’re exploring the differences of brand name vs generic drugs. 

What Are Generic Drugs?

Pharmaceutical companies spend an enormous amount of money developing, testing and marketing a new medication. When it’s time to release the drug to the public, they take out a patent on it. That is to prevent other manufacturers from producing the same drug. 

When the patent runs out, any company has the right to manufacture that medication and sell it as a generic. And because they didn’t invest in bringing it to market, they don’t need to charge patients nearly as much as the original manufacturer did. 

Are They Different From the Original Drug?

No, not at all. It turns out that generic meds have exactly the same dosage, strength, effectiveness, stability and quality as the brand-name versions. That means the side effects and risks are also identical to those of the original drug.

A lot of people think that generic drugs aren’t as potent as brand-name ones, or that they are otherwise inferior. But that simply isn’t the case. They may have a different appearance — shape, size, or color — but their substance is the same.

Who Makes Generic Drugs?

Would it surprise you to learn that generics are often manufactured at the same facility as the brand name drugs are? In many cases, the original manufacturer, who originally held the patent, will go on to produce both the name-brand drug and its generic equivalent. 

Interested in finding out if your medication has a generic equivalent? Ask your pharmacist or visit this website.

The Cost of Brand Name Vs Generic Drugs

According to the FDA, generics cost an average of 85% less than the original branded drug. That’s some serious savings! As explained above, this is because generic-drug manufacturers don’t have the high overhead associated with bringing a new medication to market.

Once the patent has expired, any company can apply for FDA approval to manufacture the drug — and many do. This translates to an atmosphere of free-market competition, thereby substantially lowering medication costs to patients.

In 2017, generic versions of prescription medications saved U.S. consumers a whopping $265 billion!

In the Final Analysis

As you can see, when it comes to the debate between brand name vs generic drugs, generics are the clear winner. They can save you big bucks on your family’s medication without compromising safety or effectiveness.

Do you love learning about how to make your household budget stretch further? Bookmark our Frugal Living category page and check back frequently for updated content!

How to Choose a THC Oil Cartridge: Your Complete Guide

We’re in an age where marijuana is becoming more commonly used and legalization is widespread. Today, most Americans support the legalization of marijuana.

With advanced technology, we’re finding safer ways to consume cannabis. Vaping is one of them. Instead of inhaling harsh smoke, users inhale vapor that’s gentler on your lungs and throat.

With all of the cannabis concentrate products available, many cannabis users who want to “get high” are turning to THC.

Tetrahydrocannabinol is the most well-known cannabinoid in the marijuana plant and is the main factor behind marijuana’s psychoactive effects.

Are you looking for a new THC oil cartridge? Here’s how to choose THC oil.

Take a Look at the Cutting Agent

THC is a very powerful cannabinoid. That’s why it’s diluted with an oil known as the “cutting agent.” Each of these carrier oils affects different aspects, such as the size of your vapor clouds and the easiness of the hit.

Propylene Glycol

Propylene glycol, often abbreviated as PG, is one of the most common cutting agents on the market today. PG is an ingredient and additive for many hygiene and cosmetic products.

It’s not only used in marijuana vape products but also in tobacco vape products.

PG is favored by many vape users because it offers a clean draw. It’s a very thin liquid and is easy to inhale. While the vape clouds aren’t big, this is a great option for beginners.

The only issue you need to consider is the allergy risk. While propylene glycol allergies are rare, they do exist.

Polyethylene Glycol

Polyethylene glycol, commonly known as PEG, is a form of PG.

PEG easily mixes the solution and offers decent-sized vape clouds. It was one of the first cutting agents; however, its use is decreasing. That’s because the health effects of PEG are unknown.

States such as Oregon have even required vape products to be made without PEG.

Vegetable Glycerin

The next popular vape cutting agent is vegetable glycerin, usually called VG. VG doesn’t mix well with other oils, which is why this agent is often used alone. This compound provides a rich flavor and huge vape clouds.

VG is also organic and more vape users feel more comfortable vaping a VG-based THC oil. Many other products contain VG, including ones used in the pharmaceutical, food, medical, and beauty industries.

VG has not been linked to toxic effects in humans but has been in animals.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is one of the newest carrier agents on the market. It makes a great mixing oil and is safe to inhale. That’s why more manufacturers are using coconut oil instead of the other carrier agents.

However, the effects of inhaling coconut oil are unknown. That’s why you should only use a small amount of coconut oil in your vape.

The only issue with vaping coconut oil is an unpleasant aftertaste. If you use flavorings in your THC oil, the coconut oil may risk taste alterations.

Should You Avoid Any Ingredients?

The only main ingredient you should avoid is hydrocarbons. Hydrocarbons are additives, frequently used as solvents. Hydrocarbons have been linked to cancer.

The best THC extraction method is used with carbon dioxide. If the manufacturer does use solvents, ensure the solvents are safe, such as the ones mentioned in the previous section.

Should You Choose a Pre-Filled THC Oil Cartridge?

The modern cannabis vape user has many options. Some prefer purchasing separate THC concentrates while pre-filled cartridges are more convenient.

Pre-filled cartridges are easy to use and don’t require the user to load in the vape. Click here for more information.

What’s the Material of the Cartridge?

If you do choose a pre-filled cartridge, be sure to look at the material of the pen and the cartridge.

You don’t want to use a pen with any low-grade materials and any plastics. Leaking is common and better-quality materials work to prevent leaking.

Low-grade pens also break easily. You’ll want your pen to last a long time, even if you buy a pre-filled or disposable pen. Some materials, such as plastic, could be unhealthy.

What are good examples of cartridge materials? Look for a sturdy material such as aluminum.

The THC and Strain Used

No two THC oil cartridges are the same. All manufacturers use different cannabis strains to create THC oil.

These strains differ in potency as well as the type of strain; for example, some THC oil cartridges contain a sativa strain and others contain an indica strain.

Always know the cannabis strain used in the cartridge. Most manufacturers state the exact strain used, the strain name, and the THC percentage.

Ease of Use

THC cartridges all differ in functionality. Always choose the one that’s simplest to use.

For example, many cartridges are now made without buttons. All you have to do is inhale the vapor. However, these pens usually require a powerful inhale. This is why many users still prefer pans with on/off buttons.

If you’re not using a disposable pen, you’ll also want to pay attention to the cartridge assembly. Is it easy to remove and install a cartridge?

Secrecy

One of the many benefits of using a THC vape is the secrecy. There’s no worrying about anyone smelling or detecting the marijuana. But some pens offer more secrecy than others.

The size of the pen is one main factor. The pen should be small enough to fit in your pocket or bag. If the pen is too big, it loses its portability value.

Some pens also look similar to an e-cigarette while others look like a marijuana pen. Do your research before buying your cartridge and using it in public.

Buy a THC Oil Cartridge

Do you want to get into vaping THC oil? It’s best to start with a THC oil cartridge. They’re potent and easy to use — perfect for beginners. However, know how to choose a cartridge before shopping for one.

Are you looking for THC cartridge deals? Or want advice on saving money? Continue reading our blog!

Preparing for Your Baby’s First Dental Visit: Everything You Should Know

Are you interested in scheduling your baby’s first dental visit?

Scheduling a dentist appointment for your baby can seem daunting, but it’s necessary. Your child’s first dental visit will be important to their health because it will outline any problems if they might have.

When you schedule an appointment for your baby, you’ll need to know of several things to help prepare both you and your child. The dentist will be able to provide you with general advice, but there are a few things you can do to ensure the appointment goes smoothly.

Read on to learn more about everything you can do to prepare for the dental visit.

Prepare Your Baby

When preparing for your baby’s first dentist appointment, you’ll want to do several things to ensure that the process goes smoothly. Preparing your baby for the appointment is best done by scheduling an early appointment.

When the appointment is early, your baby will be wide awake and alert. This will prevent them from dozing off as they’re being examined. If your baby already has several teeth, be sure to clean them before going in.

Prepare the Dentist

When you visit an infant dentist, you’ll want to inform them of your baby’s health history. While your baby most likely hasn’t had many medical visits, any information will be helpful to the dentist.

If there’s a problem with your baby, knowing their medical history would help a dentist conclude what’s wrong. They’ll then be able to give you the appropriate advice.

What to Expect

Your child’s first dental visit will be longer than the future ones because your baby’s entire mouth will be looked at. The dentist will typically look at the jaw, gums, and any teeth to ensure that they’re growing properly.

X-rays aren’t common in a baby’s first dentist appointment because baby teeth regularly fall out. However, an x-ray might be done if your child has a facial deformity to see if there’s a problem with the bone structure.

Your Baby’s Dental Health

Pediatric dentistry is important for your baby’s health because it ensures that their teeth are properly developing. With improper hygiene, things like cavities and mouth diseases can arise.

Visiting a dentist for toddler dental health will put your child on the right path to having excellent dental hygiene. The dentist will recommend you several ways to brush your baby’s teeth, what kind of foods to avoid, and how to teach them to brush their teeth when they’re older.

Schedule Your Baby’s First Dental Visit Today

When do babies go to the dentist? It’s recommended that babies have their first dental visit the moment one of their teeth appear. If your baby already has a tooth, you need to take them to a dentist soon to make sure that they’re healthy.

After scheduling the appointment, start preparing your baby by cleaning whatever teeth they have. You’ll also want to gather any documents relating to their health history. 

Browse our blog if you’d like to read a variety of health articles that will help you and your baby.

What Is a CBD Oil Tincture?

In the past 24 months, about 64 million Americans have tried CBD or cannabidiol. There are so many different ways to take CBD, too: oils, drops, rubs, gummies, vape pens, and even tinctures.

So what is a CBD oil tincture, and how can it help benefit your daily health routine?

Keep reading to learn all about CBD tinctures and how this nationwide trend can help your mind and body.

What Is CBD Oil Tincture?

CBD is growing in popularity. In 2018, the industry reached half a billion dollars. By 2022, U.S consumer sales are expected to reach 1.8 billion.

The industry continues to grow as people develop new ways to consume and use CBD oil. 

So what exactly is a CBD oil tincture? As a dietary supplement, tinctures are available in liquid form and contain high cannabidiol content. 

Tinctures are made by steeping hemp flowers that are potent with CBD in a high-proof grain alcohol. Then, the solution is cooked over low health for a few hours. 

Instead of alcohol, some solutions use vinegar or glycerin instead.

However, alcohol often creates a pure CBD tincture with the highest potency. While time-consuming, the simplicity of the process keeps the CBD pure. 

Once the liquid is done cooking, it’s often mixed with a sweet-tasting carrier oil. A few example flavors include peppermint, cinnamon, coconut, and orange. 

While a CBD tincture is considered potent, it won’t contain more than 0.3 percent THC. 

A CBD tincture won’t cause psychoactive effects, meaning it won’t get you high.

The Difference

So what’s the difference between a CBD tincture and CBD oil?

Tinctures offer the same benefits of CBD oil along with extra elements. For example, the terpenes and carrier oils included in a tincture can increase the solution’s potency.

The real difference between the two is the combination of ingredients within each. Tinctures will always contain additional components beyond what CBD oil contains. 

CBD tinctures are also designed to maximize how CBD is absorbed and used in the human body.

If you want to get the most benefits out of your CBD products, consider trying a tincture. You can shop oil tinctures for yourself, family members or even pets to experience a number of health benefits.

How to Use a CBD Tincture

CBD tinctures are taken orally or under the tongue. Since the solution is concentrated, it’s important to take a CBD tincture in small doses. Your CBD oil tincture will likely come with an mL dropper, so you can take a measured dose.

While taking too much won’t cause an overdose (remember, CBD doesn’t contain more than 0.3 percent THC), you won’t need a high dose to feel an effect. If you do need more, it’s probably only by a few drops. 

You can take your CBD tincture directly by either dropping the solution into your mouth or mixing it with a drink.

In addition to adding a few drops to your morning coffee or evening tea, you can also add it to soup or salad dressings.

Some people also take CBD sublingually. In other words, they hold a few drops under the tongue before swallowing. This can help your body absorb the solution faster than swallowing it directly. 

Make sure to hold the CBD tincture under your tongue for at least a minute, then swallow it. Your sublingual artery will absorb the CBD, then send it into your brain. You can start feeling effects as soon as 15 minutes.

The Health Benefits

A CBD oil tincture will offer the same effects as another CBD product. Since the tincture is concentrated, you’ll need a smaller dose. 

Many people use CBD for pain relief. Cannabidiol contains analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties that can treat chronic pain and other conditions. For example, many arthritis patients take a CBD tincture to relieve their ongoing pain.

If you work out a lot, a CBD tincture can help relieve the pain you’re experiencing. The anti-inflammatory properties will soothe your sore muscles, so you can focus on the day ahead.

CBD can also help treat the symptoms of epilepsy, such as seizures.

People with depression and anxiety also find CBD tinctures helpful for easing their symptoms. Today, many people use CBD to treat social anxiety disorders, generalized anxiety disorders, and other related conditions. In fact, CBD can also help treat symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder too. 

Do you suffer from insomnia? In addition to helping relieve anxiety, a CBD tincture can also help you get a good night’s sleep. 

According to this study, anxiety decreased in 79.2 percent of patients, while sleep improved for 66.7 percent of patients.

Other Benefits

In addition to helping you live a healthy lifestyle, taking a CBD tincture is also practical. 

For example, you’ll need to pop painkillers throughout the day for continuous relief. Sometimes, taking these medications at work doesn’t look professional. Tinctures, on the other hand, are easy to consume discreetly. 

Just pop a few droplets into your coffee and you’re good to go.

They also require no prep work. Instead of vaping CBD (which is obvious and time-consuming), place a few drops under your tongue. No one will know, and you don’t have to take a break to experience pain relief.

The dropper bottles are also small and easy to hide. You can keep them hidden in your purpose or pocket throughout the day. 

Plus, you’ll only need a small amount to experience the effects.

Taking a CBD tincture is also a safer alternative to popping painkillers. Instead of worrying about side effects from over-the-counter drugs, trying taking CBD. Simply adjust the dose as needed to start experiencing natural pain relief.

What Is a CBD Oil Tincture? Your Beginner’s Guide to Sweet Relief

Don’t let unrelenting pain or ongoing anxiety stop you from living a happy, healthy life. With a CBD oil tincture in your pocket, you can start experiencing sweet relief in as little as 15 minutes.

Looking for more frugal deals and tips? Check out the Health & Fitness section of the blog for our latest smart-spending guides!

The Gluten Guide: Is Oatmeal Gluten-Free?

20 million people in the United States alone are gluten sensitive. And if they’re new to the gluten-free lifestyle, they’ll have to learn which products are, and which are not, free of the protein.

Oatmeal is a staple in many people’s diets. This fiber-rich breakfast is a great way to fill you up for the day with healthy energy.

But what about if you’re sensitive to gluten? Is oatmeal gluten-free?

Read on for more information on whether this popular breakfast is free of the oft-avoided protein.

Is Oatmeal Gluten-Free?

In its purest form, oatmeal is gluten-free. Oats themselves do not contain gluten and are a great option for those who suffer from gluten sensitivity, or other diseases that make it difficult to process it.

But just because oats are gluten-free, it doesn’t mean the oats you’re eating actually are. Although this is a bit confusing, we’ll explain this a bit later in the article.

Learn more about the benefits of gluten-free oatmeal in the United Kingdom, and why some people are vying to make all oats fully gluten-free.

What is Gluten Anyway?

Going gluten-free has become a “fad” in the past few years for individuals who say they have a sensitivity to the protein. While gluten sensitivity is not yet scientifically proven, many people anecdotally claim that the benefits are worth it for them. By avoiding the protein, they can avoid stomach troubles and upset.

Gluten itself, however, is a protein that you’ll find in many types of grains. It helps baked goods rise, and you’ll find it in rye, barley, spelt, and wheat. Because gluten is found in wheat products, many people incorrectly assume that gluten sensitivity is a sensitivity to wheat itself. This is not the case.

The protein is not found in all types of grains. Corn, rice, buckwheat, and oats in their purest forms are free from gluten. This is why if you’re gluten-free, you can make bread and other baked goods with rice or corn flour instead of regular flour.

Who Goes Gluten-Free?

Before going gluten-free due to gluten sensitivity became popular, many people were gluten-free due to a disease called Celiac disease. This disorder affects far fewer people who have gluten sensitivity and choose to go gluten-free. Approximately 1% of Americans have been diagnosed with Celiac disease.

Celiac is an autoimmune problem. When the individual with Celiac eats gluten, the body responds by triggering an autoimmune response. This causes both damage and inflammation to the intestines in addition to a host of other symptoms and problems that are typically gastrointestinal in nature.

The way to avoid triggering this response is to go gluten-free. There is no official medication for Celiac, and patients are simply advised not to eat anything containing gluten.

Back to the Oats: Why Are Some Oats Not Gluten-Free?

We’ve already discussed that oats themselves are gluten-free in their purest form. But why would some oats purchased from the grocery store have gluten in them? Why would you need to purchase specialty gluten-free oats?

The issue is that most oatmeals you can purchase at the grocery store have been cross-contaminated. This means they’ve been processed on equipment that has been exposed to gluten or has been used to make products containing gluten. This means that while the oats themselves don’t have gluten in them, they may have picked up some of the protein along the way.

For some people, this may be acceptable and may not trigger a response. But for people with severe gluten sensitivity and who have been diagnosed with Celiac disease, even the trace gluten from the equipment can cause an autoimmune response or an episode.

If you suffer from a gluten allergy and you’ve been out to eat, you’ll know that restaurants cannot be considered fully gluten-free unless they use different pans and equipment to prepare your food. If they use the same equipment to do so, they are obligated to tell you.

Therefore, most of the oatmeal you purchase at the grocery store is not gluten-free. You’ll need to read the packaging carefully to decipher whether or not the oatmeal was processed with other gluten-containing foods.

Making Sure Your Oatmeal is Gluten Free

If you must ensure your oatmeal is gluten-free and are not assuaged by the simple fact that there is no gluten in the oats themselves, you can purchase oats that were made specifically for those who have gluten sensitivity.

Oats that have been made for those with gluten sensitivity are exclusively produced on equipment that is completely free of gluten. As such, purchasing these types of oats should not yield any problems for you.

When going gluten-free, it can be tempting to purchase any item that does not list gluten as an ingredient, but if you are especially sensitive, you’ll need to be aware of the contamination issue.

Going Gluten-Free

So, is oatmeal gluten-free? As we’ve answered in this article, it’s a resounding yes. If you love your morning oats, you can still enjoy them for your breakfasts, even if you’ve been diagnosed with Celiac or you’re gluten sensitive.

Happily, going gluten-free doesn’t mean that you have to leave out everything you love. And, there are alternatives for almost every type of baked goods for those who wish to go gluten-free but don’t want to give up everything they snack on.

Want more information on cannabis and health foods? If so, read the rest of our blog. It’s chock-full of useful information for consumers like you.