They say the best things in life are free, but that’s not always the case when it comes to investing in your health. From healthy eating and exercise habits to regular doctor visits and preventive screenings, maintaining your health requires time and money.
But there is good news. Making small changes in your everyday routine can significantly impact your long-term health, and many of these changes don’t have to cost much money. Here are five unusual ways to invest in your health without breaking the bank:
1. Get Your Teeth Fixed
If you’re self-conscious about your smile, it only makes sense to take another trip to your dentist and ask for suitable dental treatment options. But know that fixing your teeth can do more than boost your confidence — it can also improve your overall health.
Studies show that tooth decay and gum disease increase the risks of several severe health conditions, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s. Even missing teeth can impact your nutrition and speech. So if you’re looking for ways to improve your health, start by making an appointment with your dentist.
The right dentist can recommend the best treatment options for your dental issues. Let’s say the gaps in your teeth are ruining your health. You’re a good candidate for dental implants if your jawbone has already stopped growing and you have healthy gums. If not, you have the option to choose dentures or bridges.
Of course, you need to research and find the right dentist to get the job done. Find someone knowledgeable and experienced enough to replace missing teeth. Make sure they have a good track record and have lots of excellent reviews from previous patients before settling on a dentist. It also makes sense to find one that offers emergency dental services in case you need immediate treatment.
2. Wear Sunscreen
You’ve probably heard it a million times before, but wearing sunscreen is one of the best things you can do for your skin. It can help prevent sunburns while protecting against skin cancer.
But did you know that sunscreen can also help prevent wrinkles and other signs of aging? That’s because the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage your skin cells, leading to premature aging. Wearing sunscreen can help protect your skin from this damage, keeping you looking younger for longer.
Apply your sunscreen generously to all exposed skin, including your face, neck, ears, and hands. And don’t forget to reapply it every two hours. You’ll need to apply this more often if you’re sweating or swimming. Be sure to choose a water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30.
3. Invest in a Good Mattress
A good night’s sleep is essential for your physical and mental health. However, 35.2% don’t get the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Remember that lack of sleep can lead to many health problems, including obesity, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
Investing in a good mattress is one of the best things you can do for your sleep and health. If you want to wake up feeling rested and ready to seize the day, make sure you have a comfortable place to sleep.
You’ll need a mattress that’s comfortable and supportive. Consider your sleep position and whether you have any medical conditions that could impact your choice of mattress. For example, people with back pain may need a different mattress than those who sleep on their side.
4. Connect with Loved Ones
The digital world made more people distant. Sure, many technologies allow people to communicate daily, even if they are miles apart. But this tech is also why people are not physically close to each other.
Getting caught up in work and other commitments is easy, but making time for your loved ones is vital. Spending time with those you care about can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and decrease the risks of depression and anxiety. Did you know that social isolation and loneliness can increase your risk of premature death by as much as 26%? So make an effort to connect with your loved ones and do it beyond the digital world.
Just being in each other’s company can be enough to make you feel close and connected. So, as much as possible, stop canceling your brunch dates and holiday get-togethers. Make an effort to be physically present with your loved ones and reap the benefits of these relationships.
5. Live in the Moment
Too often, we get too busy planning for the future or dwelling on the past that we forget to live in the present moment. Mindfulness — which is the practice of being present in the moment — can improve mental health by reducing stress and anxiety. The next time you worry about what’s to come or stress over something in the past, take a deep breath and focus on what’s happening right now.
You can practice mindfulness in many ways, such as meditation, yoga, and tai chi. Or you can focus on your breath and the sensations you feel in your body. The key is to be aware of your thoughts and feelings without judgment.
You can also start eating more mindfully. This means being aware of your food’s taste, texture, and smell as you eat it. Slow down and savor each bite, and you’ll enjoy your meals more and digest them better.
There are many traditional ways to invest in your health, like eating right and exercising regularly. But there are other ways to invest in your health that you may not have considered. You can improve your mental and physical health and well-being by making small changes in your daily routine. So don’t wait — start investing in your health today!