Women's health tips in a tough economy

December 26, 2009 8:41:44 AM PST
The holiday season can be hectic especially for women who are often caring for everyone else in their family. And in this tough economy, many may not be making their own health a top priority.

But if you've lost your job or seen your income reduced this year, then it's more important than ever to take care of yourself.

Dr. Ashlesha Patel is a women's health expert, and she's here with some helpful advice.

Tips for keeping health a top priority in a difficult economy:

  • Don't forgo health insurance: if you're laid off, explore options for extending your plan to maintain regular visits with primary doctors, gynecologists and other specialists--there are government-backed programs that can help you reduce your monthly COBRA payment.
  • Don't skip regular prescriptions (i.e., birth control, allergy or asthma meds): maintenance of your daily health regimens is important to preventing larger health issues--ask your doctor about discount vouchers or financial assistance programs; certain pharmacies offer low-cost or no charge prescriptions, too (e.g., Walmart)
  • Plan ahead for health needs and special circumstances: make health a factor in planning for vacations or holidays (e.g., New Year's Eve)--make sure you always have a Plan A and a Plan B
  • Don't derail your health: Know your "health baseline" and pay attention to any changes--regularly check your own skin for moles, monitor your blood pressure, cholesterol and weight every year to keep track of early indicators for future problems

Resources available:

  • WhatWillYourPlanBe.com: an innovative new resource that provides the support and expert advice young adults need to develop Plan B's for their health, finances and jobs.
  • GoAskAlice.com: Q&A and health advice written by health experts