How to Avoid the Health Risks That Come With Financial Stress
It may not seem like your rising credit card debt or unpaid medical bills directly link to your physical health, although financial problems can affect more than just your credit score.
According to the Stress in America survey published in November 2017 by the American Psychological Association, 62 percent of Americans say they are stressed about money - and that stress could put them at a higher risk for lower-quality health.
How Does Your Income Affect Your Health?
Financial stresses have been linked to migraines, cardiovascular disease, insomnia, and more. Researchers have also found a link in how it impacts not only your physical health, but your mental health as well. They have discovered a link between financial problems and depression and anxiety.
All of these symptoms can come and go, but if you feel them consistently, consider how your financial health may be impacting you. It may be time to do something about it.
How to Improve Your Finances to Improve Your Well-Being
1. Assess your current situation. What spending steps got you to this point? This is not to cause increased guilt, but instead to help identify behaviors that can be changed to improve your habits.
2. Identify your relationship with money. Do you relate money to comfort, luxury, love, power or something else? Identifying your deeper relationship with money and recognizing that it does not guarantee happiness or security can allow you to move forward.
3. Ask for help. A trusted friend, financial advisor, senior center, church, community agency, or even your bank can be useful resources for those in financial need.
4. Make a budget and follow it. The key is to make a realistic budget. Know that just as it took time to get to this point, it will take time to get out of it. And that's okay - because you are taking action for a better future.