Monthly Archives: January 2012

Discount Dental…Something to smile about.

An unstable economy; An Unemployment rate we haven’t seen since Nov 1983 – two of many factors contributing to companies taking a second look at employee benefits.  If you are in group health care, you may not be as concerned as the individual, self-employed, and unemployed when it comes to health and dental insurance.  Discount Dental Cards are a great solution to providing immediate discounts for individual or family dental needs.

One customer at our agency, received news from their dentist that their son had 7 cavities. Wow! 27% of his teeth.  Normal cost for the fillings totaled over $1200.  Fortunately, they applied their discount dental card and the procedures were completed for about $430.  Another customer had a single crown completed for $616. Normal cost would have been $1221.00.  Consider the following example for 32086 Area:

Although Dental Insurance has many advantages, A competitive alternative to the high cost insurance can be found through Discount Dental Plans.  Don’t let the care of your teeth, be compromised. Check out Discount Dental Today.   Visit our resource page DISCOUNT DENTAL for more information, or call us at 904-824-9877 to learn more.

What’s in Your Emergency Car Kit?

We may be more fuel-economy-minded than ever, but Americans still drive a total of more than three trillion miles a year, which is around 15,000 journeys to the sun and back! Not surprisingly, a car breaks down every couple of seconds (not the same one each time, we hope!). Mostly, we are able to get back on the road swiftly, but there are times when we have to endure a longer wait, either because we don’t have the right equipment to get going again or because weather conditions won’t allow it. Sometimes, too we can get stuck in traffic for extended periods or stranded when we run out of fuel.

Of course, it’s impossible to plan for every type of emergency, but a wise motorist can eliminate or reduce the impact of most of them by carrying a well-stocked emergency kit. What goes in that really does depend on the type of journey you’re making, but let’s think right up to the most extreme type where you could become isolated.  One of the gifts my son received for Christmas this year was an emergency kit for his car.  (A great gift from Dad – the insurance agent).  Let me share with you how to put one together.   Here’s a suggestion of items to have on hand  just in case of an emergency:

Communication: A cell phone and, in case you’re out of range or battery power, a shrill whistle. Pen and paper.

Visibility: A powerful flashlight with extra batteries; candles; a ‘Help’ sign; roadside flares (follow safety precautions).

Fuel: A spare can of gasoline; a pack of firelighters (you can get some that don’t need matches or kindling); a cigarette lighter and/or matches.

Comfort: Sleeping bags, gloves, hats; hand-warmer packs; socks; a pocket-size waterproof poncho, and waterproof footwear.

Accessories: A multi-purpose (Swiss Army style) knife, duct tape, rags and paper towels; foldable shovel; cat litter for tire traction.

Car stuff: Antifreeze and deicer, toolset including screwdrivers, pliers and wrenches; an emergency tire repair kit and inflator; jumper cables.

Liquid: Bottled water.

Food: High energy, high calorie candy bars. You can buy special 3,600 calorie food bar packs, sealed for longevity, for around $10.

First Aid: Of course! You never go without it do you? The simplest thing is to buy a ready-made auto first aid kit.

Jumper Cables:  make dead batteries come alive, or be someone elses Hero for the day.

A lot of stuff right? But you can buy a large PVC sealed container for storage. You’d be surprised how tightly you can pack things. Keep perishable stuff on the top and replace it regularly. You might opt for two kits, carrying the essentials at all times and packing the second one for long or remote journeys. You can also buy some ready-made kits that contain many of the items mentioned above. Just do an online search for “car emergency kit”. A good one will cost around $75 to $100.  Oh, and don’t forget the auto manual. It belongs in the car not the file cabinet! And, of course, never set out on any long journey without checking road and weather conditions first.

There’s an App for That…

Now that you have that hot new smartphone or tablet that Santa brought (or maybe you’ve had one for a while), you are going to do something more than play games and make calls, aren’t you? They’re not called smartphones for nothing. In fact there are literally hundreds of programs or applications – apps for short – that can support and strengthen your knowledge, including lots that deal with health and safety. Where you find them depends on the type of device you have – iTunes exclusively for iPhones, and the Android Market  

( or the Amazon Apps Store for most others. Here’s a sampling:

Nutrition: The best apps enable you not only to check the calorie and nutrient content of thousands of products but also to track your diet and weight-loss progress. Try the free MyFitnessPal, available for all devices.

Workout Programs: They can provide daily routines, measure progress, provide streaming video classes and even act as a pedometer using GPS to track your location. Try the free, Wall Street Journal recommended Cardio Trainer. (Always consult a doctor before starting an exercise regime.)

First Aid Guides: For a good, all-round guide that includes advice on giving CPR, try Pocket First Aid and CPR from the American Heart Association. It’s available on most platforms and costs $3 or $4.
For a free alternative, consider WebMD or the well-rated Everyday First Aid.

Other Useful Apps: Whatever your safety need, there’s almost certainly an app for it. For example:
 Safety Button (iPhone) or Emergency + (Android) sends a text message when you’re in trouble or in danger
Medscape (both platforms) – check interactions from a database of 8,000 drugs
Recalls (iTunes) or (Android) lists consumer products and drugs that have been recalled.

Don’t forget too that most mobile devices also have reader apps that enable you to download and store digital books. They can hold thousands, so you can build up your own first aid or fitness library – and always have it with you!

Gilliland Insurance Group Launches new website

Check out our new website at  and let us know what you think.   It has been design with “You” in mind.  24×7 you’ll have the ability when our offices are closed to pay your premiums online, send us a service requests, link to community resources, educate yourself on Florida Insurance happenings, and much more.  We hope this never replaces your desire to speak with us personally, but rather satisfy those late night cravings when you just can’t get enough insurance knowledge.   Thank you for your loyalty and stay tuned for the Kickoff of our 2012 Client Referral Program where you can earn Cold Hard Cash by saying “3 Simple Words”

Home Safety – A New Year Resolution

Want a New Year’s resolution that’s easy to keep, costs next to nothing, yet could save lives? Simple: Do a safety makeover throughout your home. All it takes is a little time and a lot of common sense. Here are a dozen key ingredients: 

  1. Do a walk-around survey to identify and resolve risks – things like loose window catches and other fittings, slippery floors and rugs, unsecured cabling, floor obstacles, and sharp edges.
  2. Do the same thing around the yard, checking for fall hazards, security of equipment and proper safeguarding around swimming pools and ornamental pools.
  3. Check (and replace if necessary) smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. If you don’t have alarms, install at least one on each story of your home.
  4. Ensure all gas appliance, fires and clothes drier venting is clear.
  5. Check, restock or buy a good first aid kit. Better yet, have two. For what to include, see this Red Cross list:
  6. Make sure all dangerous tools, from kitchen knives to garage equipment, are securely out of the reach of youngsters.
  7. Have a fire escape plan and share it with everyone in the house. Need more info? See:
  8. Check electrical outlets and appliance cabling for wear and damage. See this guide from the Home Safety Council: Install covers over unused outlets.
  9. Clear out and clean your fridge, replace kitchen cutting boards and cracked pots – all potential sources of food-borne infection.
  10. Dispose of expired and unused medications and make sure that those you use are properly labeled and safely stored – that’s at the right temperature and out of reach of little hands.
  11. Make sure ladders are properly secured before using, and follow the rule of always having three limbs in contact with the ladder.
  12. And don’t forget, home safety these days also encompasses use of your personal computer. Install internet security software and keep it up to date. Plus, if you have kids, take steps to monitor their usage.

 Every year, home-related accidents result in 20,000 deaths and more than 20 million medical visits. Resolve that, in 2012, you and your family won’t be among them. Take the time to discuss safety with them, especially children.

Take Steps Now To Avoid Tipover Tragedies

More than 2,000 children die in home accidents every year. Sadly, 2011 become a notorious period for what are known as tipover tragedies – deaths caused by falling furniture and equipment. With more equipment being wall-mounted these days – big, flatscreen TVs are a prime example – the risk of an accident is growing. These accidents happen either because the items are not properly secured or because they are too easily reached by children. If you’re installing wall-mounted equipment, always follow the manufacturers’ instructions, particularly noting the need for special mounting fixtures and anchoring correctly to wall studs. Also ensure that furniture that could be tipped over is out of reach or bolted to the floor or walls. Check all at-risk furnishings and equipment regularly. See also this useful guide from Consumer Reports: