It’s been three weeks and your cough is still hanging around, but you don’t want to go to the doctor.
How long will you suffer with that stuffy head while wishing you had health insurance?
How often do you avoid going to the doctor because you know you can’t afford it without coverage?
It’s terrifying to know that you must either continue to suffer or fall further into debt.
If you’re one of the nearly 50 million Americans (up from 49 million in 2009) living life without health insurance, then you’ve definitely felt the pain of ever-rising health care costs.
And, worst of all, things don’t seem to be getting better.
The costs of health care increase every year, and skyrocketing insurance rates aren’t the only problem. The costs of office, hospital and ER visits, plus prescriptions, lab work, and the other minutia of health care are all soaring.
With these increases comes concern.
A report in the American Journal of Medicine (2009) stated that more than 60% of all bankruptcies are caused by medical problems. Paying for expensive doctor and hospital bills can be devastating to a bottom line; the looming threat of bankruptcy is a harsh reality and can ruin even the best credit.
With that weight of debt pressing on you like a humid day in Georgia, it’s hard to bury that fear and move on with life.
Yet, there are a few things you can do to fight the rising costs of health care.
3 Ways to Cut Back on Health Care Costs
By now, you know the hazards that smoking poses to your health. The government suffers $167 billion dollars in tobacco-related productivity losses and health care costs each year. The number of years of life lost to smoking hovers around the 5.4 million mark.
Even if you don’t have insurance, your health care costs will skyrocket from poor health if you engage in this destructive habit.
Quitting smoking improves your health and the amount you can save in medical coverage and health care costs. (Not to mention money saved by not buying cigarettes!)
Change Your Residence
Where you live can effect how much you pay for healthcare. Moving isn’t always an option, especially if you can’t find work in an area that pays lower health insurance rates. Or, perhaps you love where you live, and you aren’t going to move just for more affordable coverage.
It’s an option to consider, however; many areas of the country enjoy a less painful health insurance premium each month, or lower out-of-pocket costs.
Eat Right & Exercise
Eating right is another way to save on health insurance. There are 35 diseases of almost-epidemic proportion caused by the foods we eat. Many companies are now offering their employees health incentives to eat right and exercise to reduce the costs of health care.
In today’s fast-paced society, it’s hard to eat right most of the time, but it’s important to try your best. The ideal diet for every body is different. Some swear by the Paleo Diet. Some by South Beach. Whatever your preference, whole foods that are cooked and prepared at home are by far the healthiest.
As for exercise, you have a myriad of options from going to yoga classes to running. Figure out which workout method makes the most sense for you, and keep at it.
Eating healthy and exercising does take time and effort, but it’s always worth it. When you blend these practices, your body and wallet will both come out as winners.
What ways have you found to cut back on healthcare costs?