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F.A.Q.

Click on the questions below to reveal each respective answer.

Funerals fill an important role for those mourning the loss of a loved one. By providing surviving family members and friends a caring, supportive environment in which to share thoughts and feelings about the death, funerals are the first step in the healing process. The ritual of attending a funeral service provides many benefits including:  

  • Providing a social support system for the bereaved
  • Helping the bereaved understand death is final and that death is part of life
  • Integrating the bereaved back into the community
  • Easing the transition to a new life after the death of a loved one
  • Providing a safe haven for embracing and expressing pain
  • Reaffirming one's relationship with the person that died
  • Providing a time to say good-by

It is possible to have a full funeral service even for those choosing cremation. The importance of the ritual is in providing a social gathering to help the bereaved begin the healing process. 

Embalming Questions

Embalming is the funeral custom of cleansing and disinfecting bodies after death. As far back as the ancient Egyptians, people have used oils, herbs and special body preparations to help preserve the bodies of their dead. Yet no process or products have been devised to preserve a body in the grave indefinitely, and the Federal Trade Commission Funeral Rule prohibits funeral providers from telling consumers that it can be done. For example, funeral providers may not claim that either embalming or a particular type of caskets will preserve the body of the deceased for an unlimited time. 

In practice since ancient Egypt, embalming is most often done by using chemicals substances. We use embalming today for two primary reasons--to allow adequate time between death and burial to observe social customs such as visitations and funeral services, and to prevent the spread of infection. Cosmetic work is often used for aesthetic reasons. 

Funeral Cost Questions

According to the National Funeral Directors Association, the average cost of a funeral as of July 2009 is $7,755. Does not include outer burial containers, cemetery costs or other third party charges such as flowers, burial clothing, or newspaper notices. 

Funeral service is regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and state licensing boards. In most cases, the consumer should discuss problems with the funeral director first.d If the dispute cannot be solved by talking with the funeral director. The consumer may wish to contact the Funeral Service Consumer Assistance program. FSCAP provides information, mediates disputes, provides arbitration, and maintains a consumer guarantee fund for reimbursement of services rendered. ( To contact FSCAP, call 708-827-6337 or 800-662-7666). 

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