A Guide for Understanding the Cremation Process

What Is Cremation? 

 Cremation is an increasingly popular alternative to a more traditionally normal casket burial. While it is not necessary, cremated remains can be buried as well, if you so choose to do so. Because of the ease with which cremated remains can be transported, cremation does provide families with more options when they decide how you or your loved ones will rest. 

There is a common misconception that the cremation process can be completed in around 20 minutes. However, while it is still considered a relatively fast process, it usually takes around two to three hours to completely cremate a deceased body. 

In preparing a deceased body for cremation, anything that cannot be cremated, for example jewelry, will be removed. The body is generally placed in a cremation casket. These cremation caskets can be made of durable cardboard on the low end, or more expensive wood. Unless the family has made a special request otherwise, the deceased will usually be cremated in whatever clothing they had on at the time of their passing. 

How Much Does Cremation Cost? 

 This is one of the most commonly asked questions when families are researching cremation services. The truth is that the price can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors, such as the where the cremation occurs. It also depends on which type of cremation service you choose. A direct cremation, also referred to as a simple cremation, is the least expensive option. With this type of cremation service, the person’s body is cremated shortly after death, and there is no embalming or viewing. You may still choose to hold a funeral or memorial service if you desire to do so, and this increase the costs depending upon which funeral home is hosting the services. 

In the event of a direct cremation, the crematorium will be responsible for transporting the body from their place of death. After the completion of the cremation process you will receive the ashes of the deceased, or you can opt to have the ashes sent to a different location. A further benefit of this type of service is that the mortician or funeral home will handle all the necessary paperwork on your behalf, such as the death certificate. 

Depending on which cremation option you choose, the cost can vary between $500 on the low end and up to $10,000 on the higher end. A normal cremation higher end of this price range, because you will also be paying for the embalming, viewing, and a memorial or funeral service. 

While the type of cremation and funeral service you or your loved choose can greatly impact the cost, the location of their cremation will have a large impact on your expenses as well. For example, the cost of cremation in Philadelphia can range from $675-$4,600. Meanwhile in Houston the cost of cremation services can vary between $675-$6,800. 

What Are the Different Types of Cremations 

 There are three main types of cremation services: 

  1. Direct Cremation 
  2. Memorial Cremation
  3. Traditional Cremation 

A direct cremation offers the most timely and affordable cremation choice. With this cremation option the deceased body is cremated shortly after death, and there is no visitation or memorial service head. Because there are no viewings or ceremonies, this is the fastest available method for post death disposition. 

A memorial cremation is the mid-priced option. With this choice, there is still a ceremony held in order to honor the life of the deceased. However, with this option there is no viewing or visitation of the deceased body. This is a cost-effective way to honor the memory of a loved one and help provide closure in a way similar to the more traditional funeral service. If you are interested in this option of cremation services Philadelphia, contact us today.

A cremation with a traditional service is the most expensive of the three options. With this choice you have a visitation or a viewing where the body of the deceased is displayed in a casket for others to view. Because of this process you will have to pay for the embalming process, as well as for the use of a casket and funeral home. With this option there is also a traditional funeral ceremony held in order to memorialize the life of the deceased. With this cremation choice, you will often pay as much as you would with a traditional funeral and burial, however you will still save some expenses associated with high cost of a casket. In some instances, people will still opt for a burial service and ceremony where they will lay the remains of the deceased to rest and bury their cremated remains in an urn. 

 What Are the Cremated Remains? 

 What exactly are you getting when they say you are receiving your loved one’s ashes? As we mentioned before, some items that are incapable of withstanding the cremation are removed from the ceased body at the beginning of the process. After the body is cremated, however, there are still a few more items that are removed. 

The mortician will examine the remains and remove any items such as dental filling or surgical screws, and sometimes there will be larger bone fragments that did not fully break down. It is very important that you are able to trust that the remains you receive do in fact belong to your loved one, and there are legal resources available to you if you have any reason to belief that the body of your loved on or there remains have been mishandled.  

After the process is complete, you will receive the remains. After this you can decide what to do with them in order to best honor your loved one. You can choose to divided the ashes up amongst family members, you can have them buried in a cemetery, spread them on land or in sea. Because the ashes are considered sterile and are do not pose any health hazard, their disposition is generally not regulated by law, therefore you are free to do with them what you wish.