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    Does Medicare Cover Compression and Diabetic Socks?

    does medicare cover compression or diabetic socks


    Did your doctor tell you that you should wear compression or diabetic socks? What is this all about?

    Compression socks are often prescribed for varicose veins and leg swelling. They are also great for preventing that tired and achy feeling you experience when you're on your feet all day. Compression hosiery is also recommended after surgery if you must stay in bed for a long time.

    Just like compression socks, diabetic socks are specially designed to provide comfort and protection for the special needs of those with diabetes. Diabetes often leads to circulation problems, especially in the legs. Socks that don’t dig in to the legs and impair circulation are so helpful for preventing foot ulcers and for comfort.

    Since your doctor prescribed these socks and said they are important for your health, they must be covered by Medicare right?

    Nope. Medicare and most medical insurance plans do not cover compression or diabetic socks. Even with a prescription from your doctor they are a non-covered service.

    There is one exception. If graduated compression stockings are specifically prescribed for treatment of open venous stasis ulcers, they might be covered as they may be seen as wound dressings. But there are certain conditions to meet. Medicare will only cover the cost of gradient compression stockings that are worn below the knee and deliver compression greater than 30mm Hg and less than 50mm Hg. The coverage doesn't apply to compression socks prescribed for treatment of circulation issues, varicose veins, or to prevent ulcers.

    Always contact the insurance company to confirm whether or not you have coverage before making your purchase.

    Given this, why not buy compression and diabetic socks you like instead of the ones presented to you at the medical supply store or corner drug store? At Ease Living we sell socks that would be at home on the runway and that would make your doctor smile. Click here to see the collections of compression and diabetic socks you will want to wear right here.

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    March is Reading Month - Enjoy!

    march is reading month

    Part of the irony of aging is more time to read and eyes that make it harder to do so. That’s okay, you don’t have to let aging eyes interfere with your love of books. Some suggestions to make consuming all the books you love a little easier.

    1. Get your eyes checked. An annual eye exam is for everyone, so make your appointment and get in there. A optometrist or an ophthalmologist can give you the correct glasses for your needs, making everyday life possible as well as reading your favorite books and magazines. Don’t settle for self-prescribed drugstore reading glasses. Those work for awhile, but it’s really better overall and for the long-term to see a professional for help.
    2. Use a good lamp. Light can never be underestimated when it comes to reading. If you’re having trouble seeing, try brightening things up a bit and see where that gets you. If you’re still having problems, make sure you have the right bulbs installed or even look at getting a reading-specific lamp.
    3. Try a magnifier. There are several options available from portable pocket size magnifiers to jewelry and those that are as large as a page. See our selection here
    4. Find large print publications. Most libraries have a large print section of fiction and nonfiction available. And with the rise in e-readers, even more large print options are out there. For more information on using e-readers, see our blog post Love to Read for a discussion on why a kindle might be a great option for you.
    5. Try an audiobook. . Not only are great books available on CD at your local library or to purchase, digital versions of audiobooks are readily available to download onto your phone, tablet, personal computer, or other audio device. These can also often be “checked out” of the library at no cost. As at your local branch to find out if they have this great service available.
    6. Have you ever listened to a podcast? Podcasts are another listening option. These digital programs may remind you of days past and listening to your shows on the radio! Podcasts are easy to produce and are made by everyone from hobbyists, to businesses, to NPR and other news outlets. Topics range from informative to fictional stories. Many podcasts are updated each week and the news broadcasts may be updated several times per day. You can download  or stream the podcasts on many different devices from smartphones to tablets and personal computers.

    There are so many ways to consume interesting content these days. There is no reason to let aging eyes or other limitations keep you from enjoying Reading Month. 



    Do You Love to Read?

    Love to read?


    What is not to love about reading? Learning new things, getting lost in a story, laughing out loud - I've had them all with a good book or article. As we age, reading can be a little harder. But there is no reason to give it up. E-readers to the rescue! A kindle can make reading so much easier. 

    amazon kindle


    The Pros:

    • Depending on the model you choose, there may be decreased eye strain as there is less glare than traditional paper- even outside!
    • Adjustable text size! This is one of the BEST features for those with decreasing vision or when eyes get tired and you want to read one more chapter. 
    • Turn pages with a touch or swipe across the screen. Easier than turning a thin page for those with decreased sensation or tremors. 
    • E-readers are light and easy to carry. They often weigh less than a hard cover book! One e-reader can hold more than 1000 books and magazines so you will never run out of material. New books can be purchased from many sources including Amazon and Barnes and Noble or even borrowed from your local library. While you do need an internet connection to download new books the transfer is instant so there is no need to go out to get a new book. Once it is on the kindle, you do not need an internet connection to read books.
    • Some kindle models work like Ipads and can be used for email, Facebook - anything you would do on a phone or another tablet. 

    The Cons:

    • The technology thing. Many are reluctant to try new things especially when they involve computers and the internet. Manufacturers have done their best to make use simple and most offer customer support that will walk you through the task. My local librarian was my go-to source when I got my first kindle.
    • It does run on a battery so can run out of charge. E-readers do have a long battery life though and can go weeks without a charge depending on use. 
    • Oops! Being electronic an e-reader can break if dropped in the wrong way or if it gets wet.

    Selling at this time for $80-150 an e-reader is a great device for a book lover who is having trouble keeping up with their habit. We all know how important it is to keep the mind engaged and reading is the perfect activity for entertainment and learning.

    I am in no way affiliated with Amazon and make no money from plugging their products. But the fact that all I need to bring on a plane is my kindle and I have more entertainment than I could possibly consume, and I can adjust the font size as my eyes get tired, made me want to bring this reading hack to all of you.

    Rethinking Aging,


    What Does Life Look Like with Incontinence?

    what does like look like with incontinence?

    Incontinence is something no one wants to talk about. Not being able to control one’s bladder is immediately associated with being a child or an “old person.” It’s embarrassing, makes people feel unattractive, and can lead them to stop doing the things they love. But the truth is that some form of incontinence affects more than 25 million Americans and it doesn’t discriminate based on age. The majority of people that live with it never ask for help. So the biggest reason for all the shame can be blamed on not talking about it.

    What does life look like with incontinence?

    Based on the statistics, there are plenty of people living with incontinence without you ever having knowledge of it. They still go to locker rooms, for example, and are unafraid to let their partners see them in their underwear because no, a person doesn’t need to wear a diaper if he or she suffers from this issue. Life doesn’t have to be different.

    Incontinence underwear exists that is stylish, comfortable, 100% functional, and some are even sexy. Gone are the days of being forced to wear bulky, noticeable paper diapers. The Confitex line is one example that has styles for men and women that are reusable and stylish. Patented 3 layer technology eliminates dampness and odor. Toss them in the washer and dryer like you would with any other garment.

    What causes incontinence?

    Technically, it’s not a disease, but the symptom of an underlying issue that interferes with normal bladder function. A person can suffer incontinence for reasons like:

    -having suffered a spinal injury

    -a neurological disorder

    -invasive pelvic surgery



    -prostate cancer treatment


    -weakening of the pelvic floor muscles

    What can be done about incontinence?

    If you suffer from incontinence, wearing high-quality incontinence undergarments and trying these tips could make a world of difference:

    -Reduce your caffeine intake and avoid sugary foods.

    -Stay hydrated. Drinking enough water every day can prevent irritation of the bladder lining.

    -Keep your weight in check.

    -Steer clear of medications that can cause incontinence, like antidepressants and antihistamines.

    -Practice “double” urinating. After urinating, wait and try again. This completely empties the bladder and can reduce urinary tract infections.

    Life with incontinence looks like your life. You can do this.

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    11 Gift Ideas for Grown Ups Who Don’t Want Anything

    gifts for grown ups who don't want anything

    Do you have someone on your list who has everything? Don’t buy them something else that will add clutter to their lives. Instead look to one of these creative gift ideas that they won’t expect.

    1. Netflix Subscription: If your recipient loves to watch TV, a Netflix subscription gives them access to thousand of series and movies. You might even find something you both like!
    2. Grocery Delivery: It is winter in a large part of the country and a lot of people avoid going out in the cold. Make it easier to get groceries by setting up weekly delivery with a service like Instacart or Shipt.
    3. Help Around the House: A Taskrabbit gift card lets them order up help for chores around the house from vetted professionals. From yard work to home repairs to snow removal, Taskrabbit will help them with tasks they don’t want to tackle.
    4. Meal Kit Delivery: Hello Fresh, Plated and Blue Apron deliver the ingredients and recipes needed to cook yummy, healthy meals at home. Everything that is needed is included from meat or fish to vegetables and spices. These services run on a subscription model so you can gift for a short or longer period.
    5. Online Courses: Give the gift of learning with an online course from Udemy or Creativebug. While Creativebug focuses on crafts, Udemy has classes on everything from technology to music and foreign language.
    6. A Ride: Whether they’ve stopped driving or don’t like to drive in the snow and ice, a gift card for a ride service like Uber or Lyft will help your recipient get to their activities, appointments and social engagements.
    7. Museum Membership: Having a membership to a museum usually means free admission and access to tours and events not often known to the public. Whether their interests lie in art, science or history, a museum membership will be truly appreciated.
    8. A Treat: Everyone loves a little pampering. A gift certificate to a local spa for a pedicure or massage will brighten their spirits and make them feel special.
    9. Adventure: A gift card for travel from an airline or tour company will spur them to take that trip they’ve always thought about. Tauck and Road Scholar are two of our favorite tour companies with some amazing trip packages.
    10. A Monthly Treat: Subscription boxes give them something to look forward to every month. From treats from a company like Harry & David to fashion from Stitch Fix, there are so many options out there. Another interesting choice is GrandBox. This monthly delivery features products chosen for those over 65 with an added personal touch like a family photo that you provide.
    11. History: Ancestry allows them to trace their family tree and add to the family story. You never know who you will find in the lineage or where you have your origins.

    If you’re looking for a more traditional gift, shop our selection of curated independence products at Ease Living.

    Happy Holidays!

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