Click to Call Click to Text
Midwest Professional Insurance

4037 Central St
Kansas City, MO 64111

Get Directions

Featured Insurance Blog

Seven Insurance Policies for Small Businesses

With so many different types of insurance to choose from, it can be overwhelming to determine what type is best for your small business. Midwest Professional Insurance is here to help explain the types of insurance policies available and how they can help protect you, your employees and your business’s bottom line.

Commercial Property Insurance

In the case of a catastrophic event such as a fire, explosion, burst pipe, storm or theft, commercial property insurance compensates you for losses or damage to your building, leased or owned equipment, and other property on the premises. In fact, commercial property insurance can cover items such as furniture, inventory, computers and anything that would be considered necessary for performing normal business operations.

Commercial property insurance is typically purchased as a stand-alone policy or as part of a comprehensive business owner’s policy that includes property and general liability coverage. Commercial property insurance is offered on either a replacement cost or actual cash value basis.

  1. Replacement cost: Pays the cost to replace or repair the damaged property with materials of like kind and quality, without any deduction for depreciation.
  2. Actual cash value: Pays the cost to repair or replace the damaged property, minus depreciation.

General Liability Insurance

General liability insurance policies typically cover an organization for claims involving bodily injuries and property damage resulting from its products, services or operations. What’s more, this form of insurance can help cover medical expenses and attorney fees resulting from bodily injury or property damage claims for which your organization may be legally responsible.

General liability insurance policies typically have four coverage elements:

Premises liability covers you in the event that a person who is not employed at your business becomes injured on your property. If someone sued your business because they tripped and fell on your property, liability insurance can help cover those expenses.

Products liability covers you if a product or service causes injury to someone’s body or inflicts damage on a consumer’s personal property. If you’re a tech company that broke a customer’s computer while performing a service on it, those damages could be covered.

A personal injury is when your business inflicts a physical, financial or mental injury to a third party. For instance, let’s say you take action in detaining someone who you had reason to believe was stealing from your store. If it turns out your accusations are false and the person decides to sue you, you’d be covered under your general liability policy.

Advertisement injuries are caused by alleged misinformation, copyright infringement or slander made by your company. If you were advertising a product that claimed it could help clear acne and it ended up making a consumer’s acne worse, that could be considered an advertisement injury.

Overall, a general liability policy is beneficial for covering any medical bills or legal costs that accrue if the injured third party decides to sue your business.

Employment Practices Liability

Employment practices liability insurance (EPLI) is a form of insurance that covers wrongful acts that occur during the employment process. The most frequent types of claims covered under an EPLI policy include claims of discrimination, wrongful termination, sexual harassment and retaliation.

These policies will reimburse your company against the costs of defending a lawsuit in court, and for judgments and settlements. EPLI covers legal costs, whether your company wins or loses the suit. However, these policies typically do not pay for punitive damages, or civil or criminal fines.

Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation is important in the event that an employee suffers a work-related injury or illness. This type of insurance is required in most states and is used to cover medical bills or wage replacement for employees who experience a work-related injury.

For example, if a worker pulled a back muscle at work and was unable to perform their duties, workers’ compensation would help in covering any physical therapy costs as well as compensating the employee for any lost wages.

Having worker’s compensation insurance can also protect your business from civil suits made by employees against your company related to their injuries.

Cyber Liability Insurance

If any part of your business is on an online platform, it is crucial to obtain cyber liability insurance. This type of coverage can protect your business from a cyber attack or interruption that can cause a loss in data, revenue and the trust between you and your customers. Cyber liability insurance is not only there to protect the internal information of your company, such as employees’ social security or financial information, but it also protects your customers’ personal and banking information.

Most cyber liability policies include both first- and third-party coverage:

  1. First-party coverage is for the business itself— helping the business recover from any losses after a cyber attack.
  2. Third-party coverage is to cover claims by people who have been injured because of your business being hacked.

Restoring compromised or lost data can be very costly, so cyber liability insurance is there to help cover financial losses to your business and the costs of claims made against your company by clients or other third parties who were affected.

Commercial Auto

Commercial auto insurance helps cover the costs of an auto accident if you or an employee is at fault. This coverage can help pay for damaged property and medical expenses.

Your business should consider a commercial auto policy if any of the following are true:

  1. Your business owns, leases or rents vehicles such as cars, trucks or vans.
  2. Your business has employees who drive their own vehicles to conduct business.
  3. Your business has employees who operate leased, rented or owned company vehicles.

Professional Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance can cover the cost of defending your business in a civil lawsuit for an alleged error or omission. What’s more, depending on your industry, professional liability insurance may be required by law.

While many types of businesses need professional liability insurance, you should especially consider this type of insurance if your business works directly with customers while providing services.

More Information

Contact Midwest Professional Insurance to help you analyze your needs and decide on the right coverage for you and your growing business.

This Coverage Insights is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel or an insurance professional for appropriate advice.

Read More

With so many different types of insurance to choose from, it can be overwhelming to determine what type is best for your small business. Midwest Professional Insurance is here to help explain the types of insurance policies available and how they can help protect you, your employees and your business’s bottom line.

Commercial Property Insurance

In the case of a catastrophic event such as a fire, explosion, burst pipe, storm or theft, commercial property insurance compensates you for losses or damage to your building, leased or owned equipment, and other property on the premises. In fact, commercial property insurance can cover items such as furniture, inventory, computers and anything that would be considered necessary for performing normal business operations.

Commercial property insurance is typically purchased as a stand-alone policy or as part of a comprehensive business owner’s policy that includes property and general liability coverage. Commercial property insurance is offered on either a replacement cost or actual cash value basis.

  1. Replacement cost: Pays the cost to replace or repair the damaged property with materials of like kind and quality, without any deduction for depreciation.
  2. Actual cash value: Pays the cost to repair or replace the damaged property, minus depreciation.

General Liability Insurance

General liability insurance policies typically cover an organization for claims involving bodily injuries and property damage resulting from its products, services or operations. What’s more, this form of insurance can help cover medical expenses and attorney fees resulting from bodily injury or property damage claims for which your organization may be legally responsible.

General liability insurance policies typically have four coverage elements:

Premises liability covers you in the event that a person who is not employed at your business becomes injured on your property. If someone sued your business because they tripped and fell on your property, liability insurance can help cover those expenses.

Products liability covers you if a product or service causes injury to someone’s body or inflicts damage on a consumer’s personal property. If you’re a tech company that broke a customer’s computer while performing a service on it, those damages could be covered.

A personal injury is when your business inflicts a physical, financial or mental injury to a third party. For instance, let’s say you take action in detaining someone who you had reason to believe was stealing from your store. If it turns out your accusations are false and the person decides to sue you, you’d be covered under your general liability policy.

Advertisement injuries are caused by alleged misinformation, copyright infringement or slander made by your company. If you were advertising a product that claimed it could help clear acne and it ended up making a consumer’s acne worse, that could be considered an advertisement injury.

Overall, a general liability policy is beneficial for covering any medical bills or legal costs that accrue if the injured third party decides to sue your business.

Employment Practices Liability

Employment practices liability insurance (EPLI) is a form of insurance that covers wrongful acts that occur during the employment process. The most frequent types of claims covered under an EPLI policy include claims of discrimination, wrongful termination, sexual harassment and retaliation.

These policies will reimburse your company against the costs of defending a lawsuit in court, and for judgments and settlements. EPLI covers legal costs, whether your company wins or loses the suit. However, these policies typically do not pay for punitive damages, or civil or criminal fines.

Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation is important in the event that an employee suffers a work-related injury or illness. This type of insurance is required in most states and is used to cover medical bills or wage replacement for employees who experience a work-related injury.

For example, if a worker pulled a back muscle at work and was unable to perform their duties, workers’ compensation would help in covering any physical therapy costs as well as compensating the employee for any lost wages.

Having worker’s compensation insurance can also protect your business from civil suits made by employees against your company related to their injuries.

Cyber Liability Insurance

If any part of your business is on an online platform, it is crucial to obtain cyber liability insurance. This type of coverage can protect your business from a cyber attack or interruption that can cause a loss in data, revenue and the trust between you and your customers. Cyber liability insurance is not only there to protect the internal information of your company, such as employees’ social security or financial information, but it also protects your customers’ personal and banking information.

Most cyber liability policies include both first- and third-party coverage:

  1. First-party coverage is for the business itself— helping the business recover from any losses after a cyber attack.
  2. Third-party coverage is to cover claims by people who have been injured because of your business being hacked.

Restoring compromised or lost data can be very costly, so cyber liability insurance is there to help cover financial losses to your business and the costs of claims made against your company by clients or other third parties who were affected.

Commercial Auto

Commercial auto insurance helps cover the costs of an auto accident if you or an employee is at fault. This coverage can help pay for damaged property and medical expenses.

Your business should consider a commercial auto policy if any of the following are true:

  1. Your business owns, leases or rents vehicles such as cars, trucks or vans.
  2. Your business has employees who drive their own vehicles to conduct business.
  3. Your business has employees who operate leased, rented or owned company vehicles.

Professional Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance can cover the cost of defending your business in a civil lawsuit for an alleged error or omission. What’s more, depending on your industry, professional liability insurance may be required by law.

While many types of businesses need professional liability insurance, you should especially consider this type of insurance if your business works directly with customers while providing services.

More Information

Contact Midwest Professional Insurance to help you analyze your needs and decide on the right coverage for you and your growing business.

This Coverage Insights is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel or an insurance professional for appropriate advice.

Self-care and Your Mental Health

More than half of adults in the United States will experience mental illness—which refers to a variety of conditions that affect one’s mood, behavior, feelings or thinking—at some point in their life. Mental illnesses can occur occasionally, while others are chronic. Common mental illnesses include anxiety, depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Mental Health Awareness Month, observed every May, is a time to raise awareness about mental health, break the stigma and support people with mental illness.

Each condition has its own unique symptoms, but common signs of mental illness include the following:

  1. Feeling sad, irritable or angry for an extended time
  2. Feeling excessively paranoid, worried or anxious
  3. Experiencing extreme mood swings
  4. Avoiding friends and social activities
  5. Changing eating habits due to increased hunger or lack of appetite
  6. Having trouble sleeping or making dramatic sleeping pattern changes

One or two of these symptoms alone can’t predict a mental illness, but they may indicate a need for further evaluation.

Taking Care of Yourself

One way to improve your mental health is through self-care. Self-care looks different for every person since it involves doing things that you enjoy or need.

Here are some ideas for how to practice self-care:

  1. Live healthy by eating well, getting enough sleep and exercising regularly.
  2. Connect regularly with friends and family who encourage and support you.
  3. Pamper yourself by watching your favorite TV show, taking a bath, applying a face mask, getting a massage or reading a book.
  4. Find ways to relax, including meditating, practicing yoga, going on a nature walk or baking.

The goal is to try to do something you enjoy every day. If you have concerns about a loved one’s or your mental health, contact a doctor or mental health professional.

Skin Cancer and You

One in 5 Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime. That makes skin cancer the most common cancer in the United States. Fortunately, skin cancer is highly preventable by avoiding excessive sun exposure.

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, but sun protection is important year-round. Here are a few tips to protect yourself outdoors:

  1. Stay in the shade under an umbrella, tree or other shelter. Avoid the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the rays are the strongest.
  2. Wear dark-colored clothes made of tightly woven fabrics and a hat that shields your face, neck and ears.
  3. Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes and the skin around your eyes.
  4. Use sunscreen that is at least SPF 30, applying it all over your body and lips. Reapply at least every two hours—and after swimming or sweating.

Routinely inspect your skin for any spots or changes in color or appearance. If you have any concerns, see your doctor.

Sunscreen label 101

Like other over-the-counter drugs, sunscreens follow regulated labeling guidelines. Here’s how to decode your sunscreen label:

  1. Broad-spectrum protection works against both UVA (skin cancer and premature aging) and UVB (sunburn) rays
  2. The sun protection factor (SPF) is the level of protection against harmful UVB rays
  3. Check the expiration date. Sunscreens are usually good for 2-3 years.

Fast Food and Heart Health

Fast food is highly processed and contains unhealthy trans fats, especially when food items are fried in oil. Eating fried food may increase your risk for heart disease and stroke.

According to new research, people who ate the most fried food per week had a 28% higher risk of major cardiovascular events, compared with those who ate the least. Those people also had a 22% greater risk of heart disease—and a 37% elevated risk of heart failure.

Along with choosing baked or grilled items, consider the following heart-healthy alternatives to fried food:

  1. Skinless poultry and fish
  2. A variety of fruits and vegetables
  3. Low-fat dairy products
  4. Whole grains

Limit your daily intake of fast food, and talk to your doctor if you have questions.

Read More

More than half of adults in the United States will experience mental illness—which refers to a variety of conditions that affect one’s mood, behavior, feelings or thinking—at some point in their life. Mental illnesses can occur occasionally, while others are chronic. Common mental illnesses include anxiety, depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Mental Health Awareness Month, observed every May, is a time to raise awareness about mental health, break the stigma and support people with mental illness.

Each condition has its own unique symptoms, but common signs of mental illness include the following:

  1. Feeling sad, irritable or angry for an extended time
  2. Feeling excessively paranoid, worried or anxious
  3. Experiencing extreme mood swings
  4. Avoiding friends and social activities
  5. Changing eating habits due to increased hunger or lack of appetite
  6. Having trouble sleeping or making dramatic sleeping pattern changes

One or two of these symptoms alone can’t predict a mental illness, but they may indicate a need for further evaluation.

Taking Care of Yourself

One way to improve your mental health is through self-care. Self-care looks different for every person since it involves doing things that you enjoy or need.

Here are some ideas for how to practice self-care:

  1. Live healthy by eating well, getting enough sleep and exercising regularly.
  2. Connect regularly with friends and family who encourage and support you.
  3. Pamper yourself by watching your favorite TV show, taking a bath, applying a face mask, getting a massage or reading a book.
  4. Find ways to relax, including meditating, practicing yoga, going on a nature walk or baking.

The goal is to try to do something you enjoy every day. If you have concerns about a loved one’s or your mental health, contact a doctor or mental health professional.

Skin Cancer and You

One in 5 Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime. That makes skin cancer the most common cancer in the United States. Fortunately, skin cancer is highly preventable by avoiding excessive sun exposure.

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, but sun protection is important year-round. Here are a few tips to protect yourself outdoors:

  1. Stay in the shade under an umbrella, tree or other shelter. Avoid the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the rays are the strongest.
  2. Wear dark-colored clothes made of tightly woven fabrics and a hat that shields your face, neck and ears.
  3. Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes and the skin around your eyes.
  4. Use sunscreen that is at least SPF 30, applying it all over your body and lips. Reapply at least every two hours—and after swimming or sweating.

Routinely inspect your skin for any spots or changes in color or appearance. If you have any concerns, see your doctor.

Sunscreen label 101

Like other over-the-counter drugs, sunscreens follow regulated labeling guidelines. Here’s how to decode your sunscreen label:

  1. Broad-spectrum protection works against both UVA (skin cancer and premature aging) and UVB (sunburn) rays
  2. The sun protection factor (SPF) is the level of protection against harmful UVB rays
  3. Check the expiration date. Sunscreens are usually good for 2-3 years.

Fast Food and Heart Health

Fast food is highly processed and contains unhealthy trans fats, especially when food items are fried in oil. Eating fried food may increase your risk for heart disease and stroke.

According to new research, people who ate the most fried food per week had a 28% higher risk of major cardiovascular events, compared with those who ate the least. Those people also had a 22% greater risk of heart disease—and a 37% elevated risk of heart failure.

Along with choosing baked or grilled items, consider the following heart-healthy alternatives to fried food:

  1. Skinless poultry and fish
  2. A variety of fruits and vegetables
  3. Low-fat dairy products
  4. Whole grains

Limit your daily intake of fast food, and talk to your doctor if you have questions.

Benefits of Bundling Commercial Policies

Insurance carriers realize that offering additional lines of coverage to an existing customer is less expensive than trying to attract new customers. They also know that the more lines a given customer has, the longer they’re likely to stay with them.

While bundling policies is beneficial to insurance carriers, it is also highly beneficial to their customers. Similar to how bundling your personal home and auto policies may give you a discount, bundling your business policies can provide benefits way beyond cost savings.

Simplified Bookkeping

Most businesses require a number of insurance policies in order to properly insure their operations, including:

  1. Workers’ compensation
  2. General liability
  3. Commercial property
  4. Professional liability
  5. Commercial auto
  6. Business interruption
  7. Cyber liability
  8. Directors and officers

Keeping up with that many policies isn’t an easy task for business owners. Therefore, bundling multiple policies with the same carrier simplifies things for bookkeeping purposes. Besides having fewer bills to keep track of every month, it also makes it easier come renewal time if the bundled policies renew at the same time each year.

Your HR department will also appreciate having one number to call when you’re hiring a new employee, have claims questions, are adding a location, or making any other business decisions that impact your insurance.

Fewer Agents to Educate

Properly insuring your business requires explaining to your insurance agent exactly what your business does and the exposures that come with it. But without bundling your policies, you have more agents to educate, which takes time. The fewer agents you have to work with, the better equipped they’ll be to help identify and address your exposures.

Assurance That Your Policies Work Together

There may be circumstances when two of your business insurance policies have to work together. For example, you may assume that something not covered by your commercial auto policy would be covered by your commercial umbrella policy. However, many umbrella policies will only extend above an auto policy if the insurance company offering it has a specified financial strength rating. If your carrier’s rating falls below a certain grade, your umbrella policy may not cover an auto loss. That’s just one type of problem that could arise if you keep your policies under separate roofs, with separate agents.

Less Security Risk

When obtaining insurance, business owners are required to divulge sensitive personal information about their employees, as well as financial information about the business itself. When dividing your policies among multiple agents, you’re basically providing all that information to more people than you would have to if you’d bundled your policies with one agent. And in doing so, you’re increasing the risk of highly sensitive information ending up in the wrong hands.

This Coverage Insight is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel or an insurance professional for appropriate advice.

Read More

Insurance carriers realize that offering additional lines of coverage to an existing customer is less expensive than trying to attract new customers. They also know that the more lines a given customer has, the longer they’re likely to stay with them.

While bundling policies is beneficial to insurance carriers, it is also highly beneficial to their customers. Similar to how bundling your personal home and auto policies may give you a discount, bundling your business policies can provide benefits way beyond cost savings.

Simplified Bookkeping

Most businesses require a number of insurance policies in order to properly insure their operations, including:

  1. Workers’ compensation
  2. General liability
  3. Commercial property
  4. Professional liability
  5. Commercial auto
  6. Business interruption
  7. Cyber liability
  8. Directors and officers

Keeping up with that many policies isn’t an easy task for business owners. Therefore, bundling multiple policies with the same carrier simplifies things for bookkeeping purposes. Besides having fewer bills to keep track of every month, it also makes it easier come renewal time if the bundled policies renew at the same time each year.

Your HR department will also appreciate having one number to call when you’re hiring a new employee, have claims questions, are adding a location, or making any other business decisions that impact your insurance.

Fewer Agents to Educate

Properly insuring your business requires explaining to your insurance agent exactly what your business does and the exposures that come with it. But without bundling your policies, you have more agents to educate, which takes time. The fewer agents you have to work with, the better equipped they’ll be to help identify and address your exposures.

Assurance That Your Policies Work Together

There may be circumstances when two of your business insurance policies have to work together. For example, you may assume that something not covered by your commercial auto policy would be covered by your commercial umbrella policy. However, many umbrella policies will only extend above an auto policy if the insurance company offering it has a specified financial strength rating. If your carrier’s rating falls below a certain grade, your umbrella policy may not cover an auto loss. That’s just one type of problem that could arise if you keep your policies under separate roofs, with separate agents.

Less Security Risk

When obtaining insurance, business owners are required to divulge sensitive personal information about their employees, as well as financial information about the business itself. When dividing your policies among multiple agents, you’re basically providing all that information to more people than you would have to if you’d bundled your policies with one agent. And in doing so, you’re increasing the risk of highly sensitive information ending up in the wrong hands.

This Coverage Insight is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel or an insurance professional for appropriate advice.

Alcohol Awareness Month During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Observed every April, Alcohol Awareness Month is meant to raise awareness about alcohol use and break the stigma by discussing how alcohol-use disorders affect individuals, families, and communities. This year is especially critical as COVID-19 restrictions and stress can increase your susceptibility to substance misuse, addiction, and relapse. In fact, alcohol sales in the United States have grown nearly 30% in the last year.

Alcohol abuse can affect both your personal and professional life. Prolonged drinking puts you at risk for developing serious health complications—such as high blood pressure, heart disease, liver disease, and stroke— and can trigger other life-threatening consequences.

Know the warning signs

Alcohol use disorder can be mild, moderate, or severe, based on the number of symptoms you experience. Keep in mind that symptoms often occur at the same time. It can also include both periods of alcohol intoxication and withdrawal symptoms—such as sweating, shaking, and nausea.

Common physical and behavioral signs and symptoms of alcohol misuse include the following:

  1. Feeling irritable or experiencing mood swings
  2. Having poor coordination
  3. Showing signs of slurred speech
  4. Experiencing blackouts or short-term memory loss
  5. Isolating from friends and family
  6. Failing to complete responsibilities and obligations at home or work
  7. Drinking alone or in secrecy
  8. Making excuses for drinking, such as to relax or deal with stress
  9. Engaging in risky behavior, such as drunk driving

If you or a loved one are concerned about alcohol use, talk to a doctor or use the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Helpline by calling 800-662-HELP (4357).

Moving 11 Minutes Per Day Can Improve Your Health

There’s no denying that the pandemic has hampered activity levels. On top of exercising less, you are likely sitting more than normal too. However, a sedentary lifestyle can be hazardous to your health. Although this type of lifestyle may be a pandemic reality, there’s good news about the benefits of small move goals.

According to new research from the Norwegian School of Sports Medicine, just 11 minutes of daily, moderate exercise can provide long-term health benefits and increase your life span. Additionally, people who worked out at least 35 minutes per day saw the biggest results in terms of health, especially joint health.

Any movement, no matter the duration, is beneficial, as long as you accumulate enough of it. And, if you take your movement outside, you can improve your mental health in addition to your physical health. Start moving today, and talk to your doctor if you have questions about any lifestyle changes.

Mental Health Support During the Pandemic

Rarely has there been a greater need for mental health support than now. Before the pandemic, there were already shortages of mental health professionals. For example, there were 45 psychologists or psychiatrists for every 100,000 Americans. In some places, that ratio was just one professional per every 30,000 people. Additionally, Mental Health America data reveals almost a quarter of adults with a mental illness say they aren’t able to get the treatment they need.

As the pandemic continues to strain health care resources and take a toll on personal well-being, there are some ways to still receive mental health support. Telehealth is a great place to start receiving mental health care via video conferencing. Additional support resources include:

  1. Your primary care doctor, who can point you in the direction of mental health resources
  2. State psychological associations
  3. Work-based wellness and employee assistance programs
  4. The SAMHSA’s National Helpline, which is free, confidential and available
  5. 24/7 by calling 800-662-HELP (4357)
  6. The United Way’s free and confidential service for community resources

There’s hope on the horizon with COVID-19 vaccine rollouts, but the pandemic is still evolving. Continue to check in with yourself and reach out for help.

Read More

Observed every April, Alcohol Awareness Month is meant to raise awareness about alcohol use and break the stigma by discussing how alcohol-use disorders affect individuals, families, and communities. This year is especially critical as COVID-19 restrictions and stress can increase your susceptibility to substance misuse, addiction, and relapse. In fact, alcohol sales in the United States have grown nearly 30% in the last year.

Alcohol abuse can affect both your personal and professional life. Prolonged drinking puts you at risk for developing serious health complications—such as high blood pressure, heart disease, liver disease, and stroke— and can trigger other life-threatening consequences.

Know the warning signs

Alcohol use disorder can be mild, moderate, or severe, based on the number of symptoms you experience. Keep in mind that symptoms often occur at the same time. It can also include both periods of alcohol intoxication and withdrawal symptoms—such as sweating, shaking, and nausea.

Common physical and behavioral signs and symptoms of alcohol misuse include the following:

  1. Feeling irritable or experiencing mood swings
  2. Having poor coordination
  3. Showing signs of slurred speech
  4. Experiencing blackouts or short-term memory loss
  5. Isolating from friends and family
  6. Failing to complete responsibilities and obligations at home or work
  7. Drinking alone or in secrecy
  8. Making excuses for drinking, such as to relax or deal with stress
  9. Engaging in risky behavior, such as drunk driving

If you or a loved one are concerned about alcohol use, talk to a doctor or use the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Helpline by calling 800-662-HELP (4357).

Moving 11 Minutes Per Day Can Improve Your Health

There’s no denying that the pandemic has hampered activity levels. On top of exercising less, you are likely sitting more than normal too. However, a sedentary lifestyle can be hazardous to your health. Although this type of lifestyle may be a pandemic reality, there’s good news about the benefits of small move goals.

According to new research from the Norwegian School of Sports Medicine, just 11 minutes of daily, moderate exercise can provide long-term health benefits and increase your life span. Additionally, people who worked out at least 35 minutes per day saw the biggest results in terms of health, especially joint health.

Any movement, no matter the duration, is beneficial, as long as you accumulate enough of it. And, if you take your movement outside, you can improve your mental health in addition to your physical health. Start moving today, and talk to your doctor if you have questions about any lifestyle changes.

Mental Health Support During the Pandemic

Rarely has there been a greater need for mental health support than now. Before the pandemic, there were already shortages of mental health professionals. For example, there were 45 psychologists or psychiatrists for every 100,000 Americans. In some places, that ratio was just one professional per every 30,000 people. Additionally, Mental Health America data reveals almost a quarter of adults with a mental illness say they aren’t able to get the treatment they need.

As the pandemic continues to strain health care resources and take a toll on personal well-being, there are some ways to still receive mental health support. Telehealth is a great place to start receiving mental health care via video conferencing. Additional support resources include:

  1. Your primary care doctor, who can point you in the direction of mental health resources
  2. State psychological associations
  3. Work-based wellness and employee assistance programs
  4. The SAMHSA’s National Helpline, which is free, confidential and available
  5. 24/7 by calling 800-662-HELP (4357)
  6. The United Way’s free and confidential service for community resources

There’s hope on the horizon with COVID-19 vaccine rollouts, but the pandemic is still evolving. Continue to check in with yourself and reach out for help.

A More Proactive Approach Toward COVID-19 Protection

New COVID-19 guidelines from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released under President Joe Biden’s administration signal a more proactive approach toward protecting U.S. workers from COVID-19.

The new guidance seeks to protect all types of workers, not just those deemed to be at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 depending on where they work. The guidance also asks employers to shield workers from retaliation if they have concerns about unsafe work conditions. The guidance also looks to establish ways for employees to voice work-related concerns anonymously. In general, OSHA wants employers to give their staff a bigger say in developing workplace safety protocols. Such protocols already require employers to enforce 6-foot distancing and face mask wearing, both of which are carryovers from former President Donald Trump’s administration.

The Biden administration is also pushing for some federal emergency standards that could carry more legal weight— something labor advocates have been wanting. OSHA has until March 15 to decide if it will issue those standards. OSHA also announced that it is resuming public announcements on workplace fines for unsafe conditions.

It is important that businesses remain vigilant during these unprecedented times, providing safe and healthy workplaces for all employees. This new guidance from the Biden administration may help workers in high-risk sectors maintain their unemployment benefits and avoid unsafe work, even if doing so puts added pressure on business owners.

For additional safety guidance and insurance information, contact Midwest Professional Insurance.

Workers’ Compensation Premium Audit Tips

At the end of every workers’ compensation policy period, insurance carriers conduct audits to ensure that paid premiums accurately reflected a business’s operations over the duration of the policy period. This is necessary because premiums paid at the beginning of the policy period are only estimates based on projected payroll and assigned employee classification codes.

These audits can be done by phone, mail, or in-person, depending on the assigned auditor. Workers’ compensation premium audits are very common and, once completed, can indicate if any additional premium is owed, or if any credits need to be returned or applied to the next policy. Some business owners select “pay as you go” workers’ compensation policies to help reduce their exposure to large audit balances. Premiums for these types of policies are based on actual payroll and are reported/paid in real-time, contrary to that of traditional estimated programs.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic has complicated the audit process, thus affecting workers’ compensation premiums. It is important to know that there is no guarantee of the return of workers’ compensation premium credits due to the pandemic. To give your company the best chance of receiving a returned premium credit, it is critical to maintaining proper recordkeeping.

Other important items to note include:

  1. Payments to paid furloughed employees—If you have continued paying employees to stay home and not work while your business operations have been suspended because of a federal, state, or local emergency order, you need to identify the wages your company has paid to furloughed employees and provide them to your auditor during your audit.
  2. Temporary changes in your business operations—If you temporarily change your operations because of a federal, state or local emergency order, you must identify these changes. Such operational adjustments may affect the rating and classifications of your policy.
  3. Employees working from home or being assigned different job duties—If your employees are temporarily being paid to work from home or have been assigned different job duties, you must note this on your payroll records and provide these new duties to your auditor.

It is in your best interest to know your workers’ compensation classification codes, payroll, and subcontractor payments prior to any audit. For more information on how to prepare for workers’ compensation audits, contact us today.

Audit Tip

Have all Independent Contractors provide a certificate of insurance stating that they purchased workers’ compensation insurance.

Read More

New COVID-19 guidelines from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released under President Joe Biden’s administration signal a more proactive approach toward protecting U.S. workers from COVID-19.

The new guidance seeks to protect all types of workers, not just those deemed to be at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 depending on where they work. The guidance also asks employers to shield workers from retaliation if they have concerns about unsafe work conditions. The guidance also looks to establish ways for employees to voice work-related concerns anonymously. In general, OSHA wants employers to give their staff a bigger say in developing workplace safety protocols. Such protocols already require employers to enforce 6-foot distancing and face mask wearing, both of which are carryovers from former President Donald Trump’s administration.

The Biden administration is also pushing for some federal emergency standards that could carry more legal weight— something labor advocates have been wanting. OSHA has until March 15 to decide if it will issue those standards. OSHA also announced that it is resuming public announcements on workplace fines for unsafe conditions.

It is important that businesses remain vigilant during these unprecedented times, providing safe and healthy workplaces for all employees. This new guidance from the Biden administration may help workers in high-risk sectors maintain their unemployment benefits and avoid unsafe work, even if doing so puts added pressure on business owners.

For additional safety guidance and insurance information, contact Midwest Professional Insurance.

Workers’ Compensation Premium Audit Tips

At the end of every workers’ compensation policy period, insurance carriers conduct audits to ensure that paid premiums accurately reflected a business’s operations over the duration of the policy period. This is necessary because premiums paid at the beginning of the policy period are only estimates based on projected payroll and assigned employee classification codes.

These audits can be done by phone, mail, or in-person, depending on the assigned auditor. Workers’ compensation premium audits are very common and, once completed, can indicate if any additional premium is owed, or if any credits need to be returned or applied to the next policy. Some business owners select “pay as you go” workers’ compensation policies to help reduce their exposure to large audit balances. Premiums for these types of policies are based on actual payroll and are reported/paid in real-time, contrary to that of traditional estimated programs.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic has complicated the audit process, thus affecting workers’ compensation premiums. It is important to know that there is no guarantee of the return of workers’ compensation premium credits due to the pandemic. To give your company the best chance of receiving a returned premium credit, it is critical to maintaining proper recordkeeping.

Other important items to note include:

  1. Payments to paid furloughed employees—If you have continued paying employees to stay home and not work while your business operations have been suspended because of a federal, state, or local emergency order, you need to identify the wages your company has paid to furloughed employees and provide them to your auditor during your audit.
  2. Temporary changes in your business operations—If you temporarily change your operations because of a federal, state or local emergency order, you must identify these changes. Such operational adjustments may affect the rating and classifications of your policy.
  3. Employees working from home or being assigned different job duties—If your employees are temporarily being paid to work from home or have been assigned different job duties, you must note this on your payroll records and provide these new duties to your auditor.

It is in your best interest to know your workers’ compensation classification codes, payroll, and subcontractor payments prior to any audit. For more information on how to prepare for workers’ compensation audits, contact us today.

Audit Tip

Have all Independent Contractors provide a certificate of insurance stating that they purchased workers’ compensation insurance.

Making Every Bite Count

The foods and beverages you consume have a significant impact on your health. In fact, 60% of adults have one or more diet-related chronic diseases. The newly released Dietary Guidelines for Americans (2020-2025) offers science-based nutrition advice to develop healthy eating habits and reduce chronic disease risk. For the first time, this edition provides recommendations by life stage, from birth through older adulthood.

The latest guidance provides four overarching guidelines that encourage healthy eating patterns and recognize that individuals will need to make shifts in their food and beverage choices to achieve a healthy pattern. Make every bite count and consider the following:

  1. Follow a healthy dietary pattern at every life stage. Dietary needs and recommendations vary based on your age, sex and stage of life. Review the guidelines to ensure that you and your loved ones—whether they’re infants, children, teens, adults or elderly—are following a healthy diet.
  2. Customize your foods and beverages to reflect personal preferences, cultural traditions and budgets. A healthy dietary pattern can benefit all people regardless of age, race, ethnicity or current health status.
  3. Focus on meeting food group needs with nutrient dense foods and beverages, while staying within calorie limits. Nutrient-dense foods are rich in vitamins and minerals, without too much added sugars, saturated fats an sodium.
  4. Limit foods and beverages high in added sugars, saturated fats and sodium. Be mindful of the nutritional facts of the foods and beverages you consume—including alcohol. Men should limit alcohol to two drinks a day and women should consume no more than one drink per day.

Everyone can benefit from a healthy eating pattern, so start simple with modest changes each day. For healthy recipes or to learn more about the current guidelines, visit MyPlate.gov.

Prioritize Your Sleep

Sleep is just as important as nutrition and exercise to help you function at your best. But when you’re juggling work, kids and everyday life, a good night’s sleep may seem unattainable. In fact, 35% of people feel they don’t get enough sleep. Adults need seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night. In honor of World Sleep Day on March 19, consider the following tips to prioritize your sleep:

  1. Avoid drinking caffeine within six hours of bedtime.
  2. Stop watching television and using your phone and other electronic devices for at least 30 minutes before bedtime.
  3. Create a relaxing bedtime routine to help your brain unwind and recognize that it’s time to sleep.
  4. Keep your bedroom cool, dark and quiet.

If you’re regularly feeling tired upon waking up, or throughout the day, you may be experiencing some underlying issues. Talk to your doctor about any concerns.

Properly Cleaning Your Earbuds

Listen up! Earbud use can lead to health issues such as excessive earwax, ear pain, ringing in the ears or infections. Dirt, debris and sweat can build up over time, so it’s important to clean earbuds after each use. Cleaning can also maintain sound quality and extend the life of your earbuds.

First, disconnect your earbuds. Then consider the following cleaning options:

  1. Soft cloth—If you have single-piece earbuds, slightly dampen a cloth with fresh water and wipe clean.
  2. Alcohol wipes—To clean and disinfect earbuds, use an alcohol wipe.
  3. Soap and water—A simple solution of antibacterial soap and warm water paired with a soft cloth work well. If you need something more potent, use rubbing alcohol.
  4. Small brush—A clean toothbrush or cotton swab can clean mesh grilles and other small grooves.

After cleaning your earbuds, allow them to dry completely before placing in a storage bag or case. If you’re experiencing ear pain, talk to your doctor.

Read More

The foods and beverages you consume have a significant impact on your health. In fact, 60% of adults have one or more diet-related chronic diseases. The newly released Dietary Guidelines for Americans (2020-2025) offers science-based nutrition advice to develop healthy eating habits and reduce chronic disease risk. For the first time, this edition provides recommendations by life stage, from birth through older adulthood.

The latest guidance provides four overarching guidelines that encourage healthy eating patterns and recognize that individuals will need to make shifts in their food and beverage choices to achieve a healthy pattern. Make every bite count and consider the following:

  1. Follow a healthy dietary pattern at every life stage. Dietary needs and recommendations vary based on your age, sex and stage of life. Review the guidelines to ensure that you and your loved ones—whether they’re infants, children, teens, adults or elderly—are following a healthy diet.
  2. Customize your foods and beverages to reflect personal preferences, cultural traditions and budgets. A healthy dietary pattern can benefit all people regardless of age, race, ethnicity or current health status.
  3. Focus on meeting food group needs with nutrient dense foods and beverages, while staying within calorie limits. Nutrient-dense foods are rich in vitamins and minerals, without too much added sugars, saturated fats an sodium.
  4. Limit foods and beverages high in added sugars, saturated fats and sodium. Be mindful of the nutritional facts of the foods and beverages you consume—including alcohol. Men should limit alcohol to two drinks a day and women should consume no more than one drink per day.

Everyone can benefit from a healthy eating pattern, so start simple with modest changes each day. For healthy recipes or to learn more about the current guidelines, visit MyPlate.gov.

Prioritize Your Sleep

Sleep is just as important as nutrition and exercise to help you function at your best. But when you’re juggling work, kids and everyday life, a good night’s sleep may seem unattainable. In fact, 35% of people feel they don’t get enough sleep. Adults need seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night. In honor of World Sleep Day on March 19, consider the following tips to prioritize your sleep:

  1. Avoid drinking caffeine within six hours of bedtime.
  2. Stop watching television and using your phone and other electronic devices for at least 30 minutes before bedtime.
  3. Create a relaxing bedtime routine to help your brain unwind and recognize that it’s time to sleep.
  4. Keep your bedroom cool, dark and quiet.

If you’re regularly feeling tired upon waking up, or throughout the day, you may be experiencing some underlying issues. Talk to your doctor about any concerns.

Properly Cleaning Your Earbuds

Listen up! Earbud use can lead to health issues such as excessive earwax, ear pain, ringing in the ears or infections. Dirt, debris and sweat can build up over time, so it’s important to clean earbuds after each use. Cleaning can also maintain sound quality and extend the life of your earbuds.

First, disconnect your earbuds. Then consider the following cleaning options:

  1. Soft cloth—If you have single-piece earbuds, slightly dampen a cloth with fresh water and wipe clean.
  2. Alcohol wipes—To clean and disinfect earbuds, use an alcohol wipe.
  3. Soap and water—A simple solution of antibacterial soap and warm water paired with a soft cloth work well. If you need something more potent, use rubbing alcohol.
  4. Small brush—A clean toothbrush or cotton swab can clean mesh grilles and other small grooves.

After cleaning your earbuds, allow them to dry completely before placing in a storage bag or case. If you’re experiencing ear pain, talk to your doctor.

Winter Storm Safety

Severe winter weather is wreaking havoc in many areas — accompanied by record-low temperatures, snow, and ice. These conditions have resulted in serious safety implications for many people.

Namely, this weather—combined with natural gas shortages, frozen wind turbines, and individuals using more energy than usual to keep their homes warm—has caused the power grid to fail, leaving millions of individuals without heat or electricity in the midst of dangerously low temperatures. These outages are likely to last for several more days, potentially keeping some people without power for much of the week.

What’s worse, hazardous road conditions due to snow and ice buildup have forced many individuals to remain in their homes, despite the lack of heat or electricity. As such, it’s important for people affected by these storms to practice the following precautions to stay safe and warm at home:

  1. Be cautious with generators. These devices create deadly fumes and contribute to carbon monoxide poisoning if used incorrectly. Generators—which must only be used outside—should be kept dry and remain at least 20 feet away from windows, doors, and vents. From there, you can plug appliances into a generator with heavy-duty outdoor extension cords.

  2. Maintain household heat. Conserve the heat in your home by keeping all doors and windows closed. In addition, close any drapes or blinds, and use spare towels to fill door gaps and keep cold air from traveling inside.

  3. Use adequate light sources. Light your home with battery-powered flashlights or lanterns. Use candles as a last resort, but never leave them unattended.

  4. Keep the water flowing. To prevent your home’s pipes from freezing or breaking, turn your water faucets on just enough to allow for a continuous drip. Keep the cabinet doors under sinks open to ensure any warm air in the room reaches the pipes. If pipe problems do occur, use any bottled water or safe liquids you have for hydration. If no other water is available, the melted snow can be used as an emergency water source.

  5. Ensure food safety. Keep your fridge and freezer doors closed as much as possible to help preserve perishable foods. Never consume food that shows signs of spoilage (e.g., an off smell, color, or texture).

  6. Know the signs. Seek immediate medical care if you or another household member displays signs of frostbite or hypothermia (e.g., shivering, confusion, numbness, pain when rewarming the skin or a whitish-yellow tint to the skin).

  7. Stay inside. Remain indoors and off the roads as much as possible. If you must go outside, do so in short increments and dress in warm layers. If you must drive, take your cellphone with you and pack an emergency kit.

Lastly, stranded motorists and any other individuals in dire need of warmth are encouraged to go to warming shelters in your area.

Read More

Severe winter weather is wreaking havoc in many areas — accompanied by record-low temperatures, snow, and ice. These conditions have resulted in serious safety implications for many people.

Namely, this weather—combined with natural gas shortages, frozen wind turbines, and individuals using more energy than usual to keep their homes warm—has caused the power grid to fail, leaving millions of individuals without heat or electricity in the midst of dangerously low temperatures. These outages are likely to last for several more days, potentially keeping some people without power for much of the week.

What’s worse, hazardous road conditions due to snow and ice buildup have forced many individuals to remain in their homes, despite the lack of heat or electricity. As such, it’s important for people affected by these storms to practice the following precautions to stay safe and warm at home:

  1. Be cautious with generators. These devices create deadly fumes and contribute to carbon monoxide poisoning if used incorrectly. Generators—which must only be used outside—should be kept dry and remain at least 20 feet away from windows, doors, and vents. From there, you can plug appliances into a generator with heavy-duty outdoor extension cords.

  2. Maintain household heat. Conserve the heat in your home by keeping all doors and windows closed. In addition, close any drapes or blinds, and use spare towels to fill door gaps and keep cold air from traveling inside.

  3. Use adequate light sources. Light your home with battery-powered flashlights or lanterns. Use candles as a last resort, but never leave them unattended.

  4. Keep the water flowing. To prevent your home’s pipes from freezing or breaking, turn your water faucets on just enough to allow for a continuous drip. Keep the cabinet doors under sinks open to ensure any warm air in the room reaches the pipes. If pipe problems do occur, use any bottled water or safe liquids you have for hydration. If no other water is available, the melted snow can be used as an emergency water source.

  5. Ensure food safety. Keep your fridge and freezer doors closed as much as possible to help preserve perishable foods. Never consume food that shows signs of spoilage (e.g., an off smell, color, or texture).

  6. Know the signs. Seek immediate medical care if you or another household member displays signs of frostbite or hypothermia (e.g., shivering, confusion, numbness, pain when rewarming the skin or a whitish-yellow tint to the skin).

  7. Stay inside. Remain indoors and off the roads as much as possible. If you must go outside, do so in short increments and dress in warm layers. If you must drive, take your cellphone with you and pack an emergency kit.

Lastly, stranded motorists and any other individuals in dire need of warmth are encouraged to go to warming shelters in your area.

Candle Safety Considerations

When the weather gets cold, you may want to cozy up indoors by lighting a candle or two. However, it’s important to keep candle safety considerations in mind when doing so.

All it takes is a single candle mishap to quickly escalate into a devastating fire within your home. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association claims that there is an average of 21 home fires caused by candles every day—with 85% of them being avoidable.

Candle incidents can be avoided by practicing safe candle usage within your home. Learn to use candles safely in your home by following these simple tips:

  1. Trim the wick—Trim the wick to a quarter of an inch to keep the flame from becoming too large.
  2. Use a long match or lighter—To keep your hand from getting too close to the flame, always use a long match or long lighter.
  3. Don’t walk away—Make sure the wick ember is completely out and no longer glowing before leaving the room.
  4. Secure the area—Never burn a candle near anything that could catch fire. This includes furniture, drapes, bedding, carpets, books, paper and flammable decorations.
  5. Keep candles away from kids and pets—Make sure children and pets cannot reach burning candles.
  6. Avoid drafts, vents and air currents—This will help prevent rapid burning or dripping of your candle.
  7. Burn for no longer than four hours—Burning your candle for more than four consecutive hours can cause the wick to become unstable and the flame to grow too large.
  8. Extinguish candles appropriately—Suffocate the flame by using a snuffer or putting the lid on the candle to prevent hot wax splatters.
  9. Don’t touch or move it—Make sure the candle is completely cooled before touching or moving it.

For more home safety guidance and homeowners insurance solutions, contact Midwest Professional Insurance today.

Read More

When the weather gets cold, you may want to cozy up indoors by lighting a candle or two. However, it’s important to keep candle safety considerations in mind when doing so.

All it takes is a single candle mishap to quickly escalate into a devastating fire within your home. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association claims that there is an average of 21 home fires caused by candles every day—with 85% of them being avoidable.

Candle incidents can be avoided by practicing safe candle usage within your home. Learn to use candles safely in your home by following these simple tips:

  1. Trim the wick—Trim the wick to a quarter of an inch to keep the flame from becoming too large.
  2. Use a long match or lighter—To keep your hand from getting too close to the flame, always use a long match or long lighter.
  3. Don’t walk away—Make sure the wick ember is completely out and no longer glowing before leaving the room.
  4. Secure the area—Never burn a candle near anything that could catch fire. This includes furniture, drapes, bedding, carpets, books, paper and flammable decorations.
  5. Keep candles away from kids and pets—Make sure children and pets cannot reach burning candles.
  6. Avoid drafts, vents and air currents—This will help prevent rapid burning or dripping of your candle.
  7. Burn for no longer than four hours—Burning your candle for more than four consecutive hours can cause the wick to become unstable and the flame to grow too large.
  8. Extinguish candles appropriately—Suffocate the flame by using a snuffer or putting the lid on the candle to prevent hot wax splatters.
  9. Don’t touch or move it—Make sure the candle is completely cooled before touching or moving it.

For more home safety guidance and homeowners insurance solutions, contact Midwest Professional Insurance today.

Defensive Driving Tips

Although getting behind the wheel may seem like a simple, everyday task, it could be one of the most dangerous things you do all day long. As a defensive driver, you can help avoid motorized crashes and lower your risk of costly insurance claims.

By utilizing defensive driving measures, you can help keep yourself and other motorists safe on the road. Next time you get behind the wheel, implement these tips:

  1. Eliminate distractions—Your sole focus should be the road. Avoid using your cellphone, adjusting the radio, eating, and drinking behind the wheel.
  2. Follow the rules of the road Uphold standard protocols such as wearing a seat belt, obeying speed limits, using turn signals, and approaching intersections with caution.
  3. Remain alert—Check your mirrors often, and try to scan road conditions up to 30 seconds ahead of you.
  4. Don’t depend on other drivers— Never assume another driver is going to move out of the way or allow you to merge. Plan your movements to anticipate the worst-case scenario.

Read More

Although getting behind the wheel may seem like a simple, everyday task, it could be one of the most dangerous things you do all day long. As a defensive driver, you can help avoid motorized crashes and lower your risk of costly insurance claims.

By utilizing defensive driving measures, you can help keep yourself and other motorists safe on the road. Next time you get behind the wheel, implement these tips:

  1. Eliminate distractions—Your sole focus should be the road. Avoid using your cellphone, adjusting the radio, eating, and drinking behind the wheel.
  2. Follow the rules of the road Uphold standard protocols such as wearing a seat belt, obeying speed limits, using turn signals, and approaching intersections with caution.
  3. Remain alert—Check your mirrors often, and try to scan road conditions up to 30 seconds ahead of you.
  4. Don’t depend on other drivers— Never assume another driver is going to move out of the way or allow you to merge. Plan your movements to anticipate the worst-case scenario.

How to Prevent Frostbite

Being outdoors during the winter months can expose you to cold weather conditions. Exposure to frigid temperatures can lead to various health complications—including frostbite. Frostbite is a cold-weather injury caused by a freezing of the skin and its underlying tissues. This condition most commonly occurs on the fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. Skin exposed to cold, windy weather below 5 degrees Fahrenheit is most susceptible to frostbite. What’s more, in a wind chill of minus 16.6, frostbite can occur on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes.

Recognizing the symptoms of frostbite is important in order to help prevent it. Here are common symptoms associated with frostbite:

  1. Cold skin accompanied with a prickling feeling
  2. Numbness
  3. Red, white, bluish-white or grayish-yellow skin
  4. Hard or waxy-looking skin
  5. Clumsiness due to joint and muscle stiffness
  6. Blistering after rewarming, in severe cases

Long-term complications can arise from frostbite as well—such as increased sensitivity to cold, prolonged numbness in the affected area, changes in skin color, and an increased risk of developing frostbite again.

To stay warm in the winter weather and decrease your risk of experiencing frostbite, follow these tips:

  1. Dress appropriately—Wearing loose, light and comfortable layers can help trap warm air.
  2. Protect your hands and feet—Wear two pairs of socks, and insulated gloves or mittens to keep your hands and feet warm.
  3. Keep your head warm—Wear a heavy wool or fleece hat that fully covers your head and ears.
  4. Stay hydrated—Dehydration increases your risk of developing frostbite. Even if you aren’t thirsty, try to drink at least one cup of water before entering cold temperatures.

Read More

Being outdoors during the winter months can expose you to cold weather conditions. Exposure to frigid temperatures can lead to various health complications—including frostbite. Frostbite is a cold-weather injury caused by a freezing of the skin and its underlying tissues. This condition most commonly occurs on the fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. Skin exposed to cold, windy weather below 5 degrees Fahrenheit is most susceptible to frostbite. What’s more, in a wind chill of minus 16.6, frostbite can occur on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes.

Recognizing the symptoms of frostbite is important in order to help prevent it. Here are common symptoms associated with frostbite:

  1. Cold skin accompanied with a prickling feeling
  2. Numbness
  3. Red, white, bluish-white or grayish-yellow skin
  4. Hard or waxy-looking skin
  5. Clumsiness due to joint and muscle stiffness
  6. Blistering after rewarming, in severe cases

Long-term complications can arise from frostbite as well—such as increased sensitivity to cold, prolonged numbness in the affected area, changes in skin color, and an increased risk of developing frostbite again.

To stay warm in the winter weather and decrease your risk of experiencing frostbite, follow these tips:

  1. Dress appropriately—Wearing loose, light and comfortable layers can help trap warm air.
  2. Protect your hands and feet—Wear two pairs of socks, and insulated gloves or mittens to keep your hands and feet warm.
  3. Keep your head warm—Wear a heavy wool or fleece hat that fully covers your head and ears.
  4. Stay hydrated—Dehydration increases your risk of developing frostbite. Even if you aren’t thirsty, try to drink at least one cup of water before entering cold temperatures.

Servicing States

  • Kansas
  • Missouri
  • Colorado
  • Illinois
  • Idaho
  • Texas

Testimonials

Google reviews

Partner Carriers

  • Ace
  • Ace
  • American Modern
  • Bristol West
  • Chubb
  • Condon Skelly
  • Encompass
  • Foremost
  • Hagerty
  • Kemper
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Markel
  • MetLife
  • Nationwide
  • Progressive
  • Safeco
  • The Hartford
  • Travelers