Monday, February 2, 2009

Frugality Tips #15 & 16

Some more Get Healthy! frugal tips for you today! One is a free thing to do, and one is a cheap idea.

Frugal Tip #15 (Get Healthy!)

Ride your bike/walk/combine trips in the car.

You've probably heard this one before, but seriously, good idea! Not that gas prices are super high right now or anything, but besides saving money on gas for your car, you'll also save money on maintenance (did you forget that tires, oil changes, etc all cost money and have to be changed more frequently the more you drive?). Additionally, you'll be healthier if you're walking or riding your bike around. It's good for your heart and your weight, which means less trips to the doctor or hospital. Also, and this might be negligible, but not driving your car means less pollution in the air in your city, which adds to your health also.

So try and think of what you can do to cut down on the use of your car. Right now it's still kind of cold in Utah, where I live, and so it's hard for us to not use the car. However, once it gets warm enough, my husband can start riding his bike to work and I'll walk to the library with my daughter in a stroller. Right now though, we try to take one big shopping trip on one day of the week, instead of going two or three times a week. You can also stop at the store on your way home from work (or have your spouse do that), so that you don't have to make a separate trip. If you tend to go to several stores to get the "best deals" on something, Walmart price matches, so you can take the ads with you to Walmart and get the same deals... and cut down on your trips.

So anyway, try not to use your car unless you absolutely have to. Walk/ride to church, to the library, to work, to friend's houses, etc. Make your kids walk to school or take the bus (which is totally free), rather than driving them yourself, or letting them drive a car.

If you can manage to not use your car at all, you can even stop getting insurance on it and save an additional amount each month! :) That's hard to do though, I know.

Frugal Tip #16 (Get Healthy!)

Take care of your teeth.

Bet you haven't heard this one from a frugality blog before. Take care of your teeth! It will seriously pay off. Get in the habit of flossing every day (that was a hard one for me), brushing your teeth twice a day, and using mouthwash (the non-alcohol kind, because they've linked the alcohol ones to oral cancer). And make sure you get your teeth cleaned every 1 or 2 years by the dentist.

Luckily, where I live in Utah, they have a dental hygiene college where you can get your teeth cleaned for $5 if you don't have dental insurance (which we don't). It used to be free, but the economy necessitated an increase in rates apparently. You might have one near you; do some research.

But anyway, taking care of your teeth is much easier to do when you realize that it can cost QUITE a bit to get cavities filled and root canals done, etc. I know, because when we first got married, my husband had to get quite a bit of dental work done (a couple cavities, a root canal and a tooth replacement because one got knocked out). And even with our college insurance giving us a discount on dental, it was super expensive. So maintain your teeth, and keep from having to get expensive dental work done. :)

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