It’s an undisputable fact that I’m not getting any younger and with this reality comes the advent of more expense for health care, AKA as sick care. Because does my health insurance pay for nutritious food or a new pair of Nikes every couple of years so I can eat well and take a walk on air cushioned soles? There’s no copay for these healthy essentials, now is there?
Anyway, the last time I had a physical exam I casually mentioned to my doctor that I had a bothersome skin tag under my left arm and she said something I thought I’d never hear, “I could charge you to remove it, but honestly I think if you sterilized a pair of scissors you could snip that off yourself.”
Her words were like soothing salve knowing that the biggest hit to my health savings account would be the price of Hello Kitty Band-Aids.
When I was younger the thought of a pimple leaving a scar was horrifying but now that I’m more mature I figure any disfigurement will hide in a wrinkle, so I have my scissors sharpened and soaking in alcohol preparing for some money-saving self-surgery.
I would never undertake any complex surgery, mind you, lest I meet the undertaker prematurely. Though I have considered removing my own gallbladder in the middle of the night after I’ve indulged in a bacon burger, duck fat fries, and a slab of carrot cake.
I started thinking about other things besides removing skin tags I could do that would save health care dollars going forward.
Self-administration of dementia exam.
There are several standardized tests professionals use to assess dementia but I’ve concocted my own.
- Look into a mirror to get your full attention: Listen carefully to yourself and say these three words, “I look tired.” Then repeat the three words.
- Next, draw a clock. Glancing at the bedside alarm I drew this.
- Recall the three words from above. I said, “I am tired.” Not only did I repeat three words, I scored bonus points for a brilliant deduction.
- I gave myself a perfect score, threw the demon alarm into the trash, and took a nap since I was tired and after performing this strenuous exercise I needed rest.
DYI Bone density test
The perfect way to evaluate the integrity of your bones is to fall on the ice. If you don’t live in a climate that includes six months of ice, snow, and hopelessness, then a well-placed puddle of water on a tile floor should be an adequate substitute. If you nail the landing without needing a nail to pin your hip, you can declare your bones as tough as timbers.
Ready made stress test
If you have grandsons this will be a test you repeat every time you spend time with these energetic daredevils. From jumping off the coffee table narrowly missing the brick fireplace to disappearing in the middle of the night only to find them sleeping on the floor behind the couch, if your heart doesn’t stop or go into a lethal arrhythmia you can kick that cardiac bypass to the curb.
Non-fasting cholesterol analysis
I have a proven alternative to suffering through 12 hours of fasting, crawling to the lab with your last ounce of strength, and swooning when they stick a beveled spike into your arm. Eat a 24-ounce porterhouse steak accompanied by creamy mashed potato and a bucket of bread dripping in olive oil. Your gallbladder may protest, but if you don’t have a heart attack your cholesterol is fine.
I’m not a fan of medical imaging but since I plan to eventually donate my brain to science I thought it might be worth a look around. Even though my results showed a few tiny defects I was thrilled to see the light still burning.
I admit some of my tips may be difficult for the average sane person to implement, and throwing yourself onto a cactus to do your own acupuncture treatment could be risky. I’d like to know your innovative ideas about how to save money on out-of-control health care costs? Do share!