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Stop Googling Your Symptoms (and 8 Other Tips For Medical Peace of Mind)

medical peace of mind

Remember that one time you had a headache and you googled it and WebMD told you that you were gonna die because you had an incurable brain parasite from Brazil?

And even though you knew it was probably just a tension headache, there was that one second where you thought it’d be kinda funny if they played ‘Highway to Hell’ at your funeral.

Googling your symptoms never does any good – especially if you’ve recently been diagnosed with a chronic illness. Every little thing seems to come with a massive ‘DANGER’ warning.

But don’t worry: there’s hope. Doing these eight things will give you peace of mind.

1. Talk to an expert

If you’re worried, your doctor is your best bet. Being sick sucks, but a diagnosis means you can actually put a name on what you’ve been feeling, and you can begin to treat it.

2. Review your insurance policies

Here’s the great news: if you’ve already got Life Insurance, there’s no need to go into a panic and start going through your policy to see if it covers your illness.

That’s because any medical issue arising after you’ve taken out your policy is irrelevant and there’s no need for you to disclose it ­– nor will it affect your premium.

But here’s what you do need to have a bit of a think about: if your illness is mild, firstly, thank your lucky stars. Then, schedule some time in your diary to have a serious chat with yourself about Critical Illness Cover or Income Protection. Putting this in place is a very good idea – y’know, just in case next time it actually is that Brazilian parasite.

3. Understand the Life Insurance process for sick people

If you don’t have Life Insurance yet, it’s not all doom and gloom. There’s no need to abandon all hope, ye who enter.

Now you’ve been diagnosed, it makes sense to think about getting Life Insurance – but don’t worry yet: an illness doesn’t mean you’ll automatically be turned down.

So the process goes like this:

  • Complete an application form.
  • On the application form, you’ll disclose your health issue. If it’s mild, you might get coverage, pronto.
  • If it’s a more serious issue, the insurer will write to your GP for a report. The insurers are usually quick because they make their money when they issue policies, but your GP can slow things down. If your GP is on the ball, you’ll get cover or a denial letter fairly quickly. Either way: you’ll know.

And, added bonus: for most applicants, you won’t need to do a medical unless your BMI is above 30. So you can probably get away without a doc visit. Phew!

Depending on your illness, don’t be surprised if you have to pay a bigger premium.


4. Look into government schemes

If you’re chronically ill and you know you might not be able to keep working full or part-time, get in touch with your local welfare office. You might be eligible for social welfare payments in the form of means-tested disability allowance or other extra payments.

Head over to the Citizens Information website to get all the info you need.

5. If you’re in the mortgage process, schedule a chat too

When you get a mortgage in Ireland, you have to get Mortgage Protection which guarantees your mortgage will be paid if you die.

If you’re in the mortgage process and you have a chronic illness give your advisor a buzz and let them know about your illness so they can apply to the most sympathetic insurer. In most cases, chronic illness won’t affect your ability to get Mortgage Protection, unless you’ve recently been diagnosed or your medication isn’t keeping your condition under control.

That said, it’s super rare but it can be denied if the condition isn’t under control, for example, if you’re a diabetic with a high HbA1c reading – that’s typically 9+, FYI.

6. Consider making lifestyle tweaks

While making basic lifestyle changes won’t be too useful in the case of many chronic illnesses – especially autoimmune diseases – they can be helpful in some cases.

This is all the obvious stuff like quitting smoking and eating healthier, and you’ll be surprised how much better you may feel – even if this gif is a representation of you attempting to eat vegetables:


7. Learn about your illness and make a serious investment in self-care

And I don’t mean scouring the internet for horror stories about people with chronic illnesses! Look into joining a support group online or going to a community group in real life. Talk to people with the same illness as you and ask questions.

Mostly, look after yourself and get really good at self-care: do yoga or meditation or hate-watch crappy TV shows – whatever makes you feel better!

8. Get serious about Serious Illness Cover or Income Protection

If you plan on staying in work, you should look into Serious Illness or Income Protection. With Serious Illness, you’ll be covered if you get sick with any of a list of specific illnesses – usually the really bad ones like cancer or a stroke.

Income Protection kicks in if you can’t work for any reason for longer than a certain length of time and will pay you up to 75 percent of your income – which you’ll be really glad of if you end up out of work for more than your measly work-allotted three days.

See: it’s not all bad.

Over to you…

Have you recently been diagnosed with a chronic illness? Don’t panic! You’ve come to the right place. If you’d like financial peace of mind, please get in touch.

Complete the short form below or call me on 05793 20836 and I’ll get back to you.

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