5 Money-Saving Tips When Living with a Long-term Condition

a doctor talking to a patient with long term condition

Under normal circumstances, saving money can be a challenge for many people. This task becomes doubly difficult if you’re living with a long-term health condition. From more frequent visits to the doctor to regular purchases of maintenance medications, managing your finances can be an uphill battle if you have a chronic disease.

That said, it’s not impossible to save on costs and even grow your wealth even when you have an illness. It will take a lot of work, but it can certainly be done!

Here are some money-saving tips that can help get you started:

Track Your Medical Expenses and Create a Budget

As previously mentioned, if you have a long-term health condition, you’re going to visit the doctor more often and buy more medications. In worse cases, you may also need special equipment such as a wheelchair, self-testing kits, and monitoring devices. If you aren’t careful, you can end up spending a huge chunk of your money on your medical bills alone and compromise other expenses.

To avoid this situation, make sure to track all the health-related items in your budget. Then, compare the total with how much you spend for essentials like food, utilities, and savings. Doing this will give you a clearer picture about where you can make adjustments and how much.

If your medical expenses are so much higher than what you spend for your needs, talk with your doctor and see if there are any alternatives you can try. Just don’t suddenly stop taking your medicines or changing the dosage (like cutting tablets in half). This can lead to side effects or complications, which can cost you even more money.

Find a Drugstore You Trust

Nowadays, it’s easier than ever to access much-needed medications through e-commerce. However, keep in mind that not all products sold online are legitimate. When it comes to medications, you need to be extra vigilant because the risk is much greater.

If you take fake medicines, the least that can happen is that your symptoms may not improve; the worst could be that your symptoms get worse or you may even develop unpleasant side effects or other diseases. 

Don’t fall for promises of instant or miracle cures, as well as suspiciously cheap medications. Rather, you need to find an online drugstore that has a proven reputation. This way, you can always be sure of the quality and effectiveness of the products you’re buying. You may also enjoy discounts through occasional promos, loyalty points, and more.

online drugstore

Prepare an Emergency Fund

At first glance, it may seem counterintuitive to set aside an emergency fund and take money off your revolving cash flow for your health expenses. However, it will actually help you save in the long run when you consider the potential cost of a crisis.

You might end up getting a high-interest loan or even selling some of your belongings to cover your day-to-day needs.

With an emergency fund that’s good to last for about 6 to 12 months of your living and medical expenses, you can be more secure about your financial future. Having peace of mind can also contribute to your better health.

Get Insured and Let Your Financial Advisor Know

One of the best ways to save money is to protect it in the form of insurance. If you have a long-term condition, the most important one to have is health insurance. This way, you don’t have to spend too much on things like doctor consultations, lab tests, and some basic medical procedures.

Getting life insurance, on the other hand, can help shield your loved ones in case the worst happens.

Before you avail of any of these insurance products, however, make sure to let your financial advisor know of your circumstances. The information can help them pick the best plans for you to ensure better coverage and maximum benefits.

Your financial advisor may also be able to help you plan your estate so your assets can be managed properly and your loved ones taken care of.

Make Lifestyle Changes

You’ve probably already made lifestyle changes based on the recommendations of your doctor so that you can better manage your illness. These changes may include eating a healthier diet, getting some exercise, and quitting smoking.

However, you should also make a conscious effort to evaluate your other habits and see if you can further cut down on costs.

For example, do you find yourself staying up late to binge-watch movies and TV shows? It may be a good idea to cancel your subscriptions to streaming services. You may also want to stop using your mobile devices before bed so you can get more quality sleep.

Doing these will be beneficial to your overall health because your body will be better rested. Ultimately, it can help cut down your health-related expenses.

Final Thoughts

It can be challenging, not to mention expensive, to live with a long-term health condition. Hopefully, these tips can make financial management a little easier for you and your loved ones.

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Written by Dr. Ganga Sapkota
Updated on October 1, 2022

A graduated medical physician with years of experience in the medical field. Working as a full-time physician in Puspanjali Hospital, Chitwan, Nepal.