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Making Smart Health Decisions

Begin making great health decisions on how to manage your health benefits and finances. Here are a few of my ideas!
1.Use an FSA account – FSA is a Flexible Savings Account where you can pull some money aside from your paycheck before they are taxed and can use this money towards health care expenses such as dental visits, co-pays, and vision exams.
2. Look back at last year – Figure out your approximate spending on health care last year and try to be lenient for new expenses you know may come up this year, such as if a child might need to start seeing an orthodontist. Figuring out a yearly amount of estimated expenses and then budgeting it across the whole year will help make a big expense not be such a huge expense as you will have some saved up from previous months when you may not have had any big medical purchases.
3. Eat Healthy – Eating healthy can be a very easy way to stay healthy but it’s hard to get motivated to make a change if your habits aren’t the best.  You can make a big difference by simply adding in a multi-vitamin or some Vitamin-C through a vitamin or natural sources like Orange Juice or having a snack of strawberries.
4. Manage your stress –  Becoming overwhelmed and stressed out I have always found was a quick way to end up catching something that was going around. I know when I’m nursing if I ever get stressed and don’t slow down and manage it I will end up with mastitis and then will be forced to rest and slow down as I will feel horrible for several days. If you have too much on your plate maybe you can find some things that you can postpone or let go of all together, or get some help by delegating or calling in friends and family for help.

5. Keep Active – By keeping active you will keep your overall health up. Exercise is also a great way to lower stress and clear your mind. You don’t have to head to the gym to exercise, you can walk the kids to a neighborhood park and chase them around the playground rather then sitting to watch them. You could also play a game with your children like tag, ring-around-the-rosy, or duck-duck-goose and you’ll be moving and having fun!
With all the new Health Care Reforms being implemented it is important to look at what benefits are best for you and your family and pay attention to the options and packages available to you. I hope you found some things you can start doing today to get your plan in order and keep you healthy through flu season and into the next year. What great tips do you have for staying healthy? 
**I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Aetna blogging program, making me eligible to get a $30 Target gift card.