Friday, September 19, 2014

Breathing is Expensive

Every fall I have to avoid bonfires, exercise, beer, and sometimes even just being outside. Although it's the most beautiful time of year, it's often the most stressful for me. As someone with chronic asthma, my lungs just can't take the season change and with very few exceptions, I end up in the ER in the middle of the night unable to breathe once or twice a September. It's been happening since 2nd grade and not only does it cramp my fall-loving style but it's expensive. Crazy expensive.

Depending on the year and how bad my asthma is, I end up paying $1,000-$4,000 in medical expenses every fall. That's not exactly budget friendly. And go figure, my asthma is also triggered by stress so worrying about that expense doesn't help anything.

This year, especially in line with the spending challenge, I knew I needed to be proactive. Not only did I not want my roommates to have to drive me to the ER in the middle of the night, I knew I wasn't wasting money on the ER. So I decided to be proactive. Every year, after the asthma attacks, my doctors would give me a preventative steroid inhaler. It finally clicked this year that I should use last year's after thought to be preventative this year!

As I picked up my meds yesterday, I learned that my preventative inhaler cost $191. I was appalled that it costs me $1.50 per puff but I would rather pay that than a medical bill and a ruined fall any day. And fortunately a fee like that can be covered with my HSA account, unlike a couple thousand in medical bills. 

So I puff my Flovent inhaler and take an allergy pill every night and it's amazing the difference I have felt! I have exercised, I drink beer, I go on walks and I even had a bonfire last night! I might actually be able to enjoy this season we call fall! And best of all, I sleep through the night, full able to breathe with no coughing fits. I'm knocking on all of the wood and crossing my fingers, eyes, and toes that this solution sticks.

I'm learning that fairly minor changes like this is exactly what I was hoping the spending challenge would accomplish. I have yet to feel restricted or deprived, yet I already feel smarter about how my actions affect my financial situation.

Cheers to starting week 3 tomorrow!

1 comment:

  1. That's awesome you thought to be preventive this year, I'm glad it's working for you. It's kinda weird that a doctor never suggested this sooner!