These shocking numbers show how few people really have enough money to survive, even if the definition of a “living wage” varies greatly depending on where you live. Even individuals making $100,000 per year report living paycheck to paycheck, and 59% of those in this income bracket admit to carrying some kind of debt. This differs from one location to another. Sixty-six percent of individuals surveyed reported having a lot of debt.
And what about the six-months’ worth of income that our superiors keep urging us to put away as an emergency fund? There is no way that more than half of us here could ever do it. Over half of us (56%) are unable to save more than $100 every month, according to one survey. When all the numbers are added up, most of us are one catastrophic catastrophe away from financial ruin.
Despite the common belief that money can’t buy happiness, it may help you take better care of your body and mind. Why? Having to make ends meet from paycheck to paycheck is quite challenging. The American Psychological Association has shown that people’s financial situations are a major cause of stress in their lives. The negative consequences of stress on one’s physical health have been documented and are accepted as scientific fact. So you should know about the toll of living paycheck to paycheck
Access to quality healthcare is often the first “luxury” to be cut when times are tough.
Paycheck to paycheck life may be harmful to your health in many ways, including the desire to put off medical care. In 2014, the American Psychological Association (APA) commissioned Harris Poll to conduct a survey among more than 3000 people on their behalf. According to the study’s findings, one in five Americans avoids seeking the healthcare they need due to financial concerns. Actually, over 12% of respondents said they have avoided medical attention and ignored health issues because of cost concerns.
One Australian study found that those who are financially stressed are more likely to smoke, which greatly raises their risk of developing heart problems.
Simply put, middle-aged women are more likely to develop high blood pressure and coronary heart disease because of stress. Further, even the young are not safe from this. According to research conducted by Elizabeth Sweet, an assistant professor in the department of anthropology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, those who are in debt are more likely to have higher diastolic blood pressure and worse physical and mental health than those who are financially secure, even if they are as young as 24. In the course of her investigation on the relationship between stress and young people, Sweet conceived and carried out the present study.
It’s plausible to assume that debt may have an effect on stress-sensitive parts of physical health including cardiovascular disease and risk factors, obesity, and metabolic function. It is plausible to assume that debt may affect stress and mental health (including depression and anxiety) given the substantial research linking the two. Debt, and the stress associated with it, may have serious consequences for one’s physical health if it leads to changes in eating habits, levels of physical activity, substance abuse, and medical attention sought or avoided.