Medical debt can be extremely stressful to deal with, especially because it comes at a time when you need to be recovering. The good news is that there are a few ways you can go about lowering your medical bills and reducing your medical debt.
1. Get on a Budget
One of the best ways to get control of your debt is to create a budget. When you know where your money is going, it’s easier to make adjustments to ensure that you’re making debt payments a priority. If you’re not sure how to get started, consider speaking to a financial advisor or using budgeting software.
2. Prioritize Your Medical Expenses
If you have outstanding medical bills, it’s important to prioritize them. Start by making a list of all of your medical expenses, including the interest rates and minimum payments for each bill. From there, you can make a plan to pay off the debts with the highest interest rates first. You may also want to consider negotiating with your healthcare providers to see if they are willing to combine debt and lower your interest rate altogether.
3. Consider a Debt Consolidation Loan
If you have multiple debts with different interest rates, it can be helpful to consolidate your debt into one loan with a lower interest rate. This can help you save money on interest and make it easier to pay off your debt. You can get a debt consolidation loan from a bank or reach out to a debt consolidation company.
4. Negotiate Debt and Prices
If you’re struggling to make payments, reach out to your creditors and see if they’re willing to negotiate. They may be willing to lower your interest rate or give you more time to pay off your debt. It’s always worth a try! You can also talk with your dentist and ask about price negotiation. For instance, consider that about 25% to 50% of children require orthodontics for their health. If you have multiple children, ask your dentist if they would be willing to give you a discount for enrolling your family in their clinic. You can also check out the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
5. Take Advantage of What’s Free
Unfortunately, medical debt sometimes comes from paying for more expensive procedures that may have been preventable. You can help to avoid adding to your medical debt by taking advantage of what’s free in your health and dental insurance plans. For example, according to the CDC, 50% of adults aged 30 and older suffer from some form of gum disease. Dental cleanings and exams are usually free as a part of your dental insurance, and it’s recommended to receive a dental cleaning once every six months.
6. Explore Deals and Rewards Programs
There are lots of companies out there that offer deals and rewards programs to help you save money on medical bills. For instance, many dental and vision insurance plans offer discounts on routine services. You can also check out websites like Groupon for deals on local dental care. Finally, don’t forget to ask your dentist if they offer any new membership discounts. Many dentists and doctors will give you a discount if you pay for an annual membership upfront or if you’re a new patient.
These are just a few tips to help you fight debt and lower your medical bills. Use them to create a budget, consolidate your debt, negotiate prices, start a side hustle, or explore deals and rewards programs. With a little effort, you can get your debt under control and save money on your medical bills!