There is no denying that family health and wellbeing is top priority for most of us, but when it comes to ensuring our family has everything they need, that’s when it can get downright stressful.
When it comes to staying healthy these days, we are hearing everything we should and shouldn’t do from every possible angle. On TV, on the internet, from people we know, in magazines, out shopping. Even scrolling through Facebook these days you cannot escape the latest health products or diet trends. And that alone is enough to cause anyone stress.
Firstly, it’s hard to know what is true and accurate these days, to ensure you are making the best choices for your family. And secondly, it is information overload which is just downright overwhelming!
Grocery shopping can be stressful when certain ‘healthy foods’ cost an arm and a leg, yet the shelves may be filled with processed or fast food long life variations that always seem to conveniently be on sale. Or maybe it isn’t the cost of healthy food that is causing stress, but knowing the best ways to prepare it or coming up with fresh new ideas to keep our family nourished with great meals and healthy snacks for work and play. Coming up with easy healthy lunch ideas can be hard work for a mum!
Then there’s the big one – finances! It’s no surprise that even with our health and wellness, it usually comes down to finances as one of the key causes of our stress.
Whether we be spending money on vitamins and supplements, over-priced gym memberships, fitness equipment, or the latest ‘superfood’ product, it all adds up, much quicker than we like and that causes mega stress since the overall costs of living are already on the rise.
The costs of healthcare and medical expenses can leave us all very much out of pocket and wondering where that next dollar is coming from. Payday comes around and the weekly wages are gone almost as fast as they arrived. It can put a lot of strain on individuals and on households.
Especially when it comes to the horrendous costs of health insurance… and it’s only set to get worse!
According to Compare the Market, 1 in 3 Australian families struggle to afford their health insurance premiums. Unfortunately this also means many people choose not to have health insurance because they simply cannot afford it. This is a massive source of stress, particularly if health problems do arise and you are either left waiting for the public system to accommodate you, or worse – you can’t afford the type of care you need.
While we do have health insurance, I have considered cancelling it on more than one occasion, especially when the annual policy increase rolls around. And the fact that we became a single income family for part of last year. The costs are excessive and for a healthy family, it didn’t seem like a necessity… but I’m glad I didn’t cancel it.
Just after the birth of our second daughter, my husband needed urgent knee surgery and even though our hospital cover was basic, it meant fast action and a massive reduction in our overall costs! We saved a couple of thousand dollars by having our health insurance, on this one surgery… more than the costs of our yearly cover, but we have also saved several hundred more through the year on extras, such as chiro, accupuncture and dental.
So while the cost of our health insurance is stressful, having it still meant much less stress than being without it. And while our cover is incredibly basic, it is also a whole lot cheaper than it could be otherwise, for unnecessary cover such as hip replacement or cataracts. This is one of the key things to cutting costs on your insurance.
In fact, instead of cancelling our health cover when I stopped work, I shopped around and switched to a cheaper health insurance provider with a similar package to our existing policy. In fact, it had some inclusions our existing policy didn’t have… for about $800 less per annum. That is HUGE!!
Personally I am a bit obsessed with finding the best price for services and I will always shop around for alternative providers for our major household services and insurance products, committed to saving money on household expenses. Health insurance was no exception… but finding the best product for you can be an overwhelming task. Thankfully that is what makes comparison services so great!
Compare the Market helps take the stress out of finding the right health insurance policy for you and your family. A comparison can be made online via their website, or you can speak to a customer service consultant. They will assist you in finding the best policy for your family’s health needs, taking the leg work out of searching endless policies and providers yourself.
And with the cost of health insurance set to rise again this year, on average of 5.06% on Australian health insurance policies, now is definitely the time to review your current health insurance policy!
Having health insurance for our family is something we will continue to have, even though when that annual policy cost rolls around, we are almost always tempted to cancel it and hope for the best. And maybe we would have, had it not saved us a small fortune in out of pocket medical bills recently. But in the long run, making some small sacrifices along the way to cut unnecessary living expenses is well worth it if we can have the peace of mind that our family healthcare is being taken care of, in case of the unexpected. Having this sorted is just one of the ways to reduce stress in our household.
What causes you the most stress about maintaining a healthy family? Do you make sacrifices in order to have health insurance? Share in the comments.
*This post is part of a collaboration with Compare the Market. Please refer to my work with me page for dislosure policy.