Respirator subscription

Anytime I go into the attic or near dust of any kind, I put on one of these 3M Cool Flow respirator masks. They are comfortable and they really help me from having a sneezing fit. My daughter uses them for her art projects. Amazon sells a 10 pack for $15, but I use Amazon’s Subscribe and Save and get a 10 pack sent to me every six months for $14. — MF

HealthClaudia Dawson
No more clogged ears

Air travel with a head cold leads to excruciating ear pain when the plane descends, followed by three days of plugged ears. Neither the Frenzel maneuver or the Valsalva maneuver work for me. Last week I had to fly to Switzerland with a cold. I found out about this $60 gadget called Eustachi, and I brought it with me on the plane. It worked! It delivers little bursts of pressurized air through your nostril, and when you swallow, your ear will “pop.” This is a life changer. — MF

HealthClaudia Dawson
Handheld heated massager

We bought this heated Shiatsu Massager more than a year ago, and it has definitely been put to good use. We keep it plugged in right next to the couch and use it every night. The arm handles allow you to adjust and place the massage nodes directly on hard to reach muscles. — CD

HealthClaudia Dawson
Weighted blanket alternative

If you’ve ever had a panic attack or prone to anxiety, a weighted blanket can be helpful but pretty pricey. A free alternative if you’re ever in need is to take a shower with a towel wrapped around you. The towel will be made heavy by the water and the calming effect is that it feels like a warm hug. — CD

HealthClaudia Dawson
Countdown to your death

I hacked up a death countdown clock to show me how many days I have left to live. I went to the actuarial tables for life expectancy to determine how old a typical person my age will live to, and then input that date into the Date Countdown website. It shows me that I have an estimated 6,300 days to live. Each day that small sum really focuses me. (BTW, your longevity increases over time because of science, so every few years you need to adjust your due date.) — KK

HealthClaudia Dawson
Get birth control without insurance

I was recently in between health insurance providers and couldn’t get in to see the doctor before my birth control pills ran out. l signed-up for Nurx (took less than 10 minutes), and within 3 days, they sent me a 3-month supply in the mail — no charge. For those without insurance, options start at $15 per month. — CD

HealthClaudia Dawson
Hay fever relief

I’ve been taking nettles leaf capsules for over 20 years to deal with my allergies to dust and pollen. My wife and daughter use it too. All of my dubious friends who try it also become true believers. I buy the 100-capsule bottles of Nature’s Way and take 4-6 every few hours during allergy season. — MF

HealthClaudia Dawson
Good small first aid kit

This first aid kit comes in a small bag, but it’s loaded with stuff. Besides the usual bandages and sterile gauze pads, it comes with sting relief pads, an instant cold pack, a light stick, a poncho and blanket, splinter tweezers, a compass, a whistle, and a lot more. At $11, it’s a great deal. — MF

HealthClaudia Dawson
Home blood type test

My 15-year-old daughter learned about blood types in school and was curious to learn her blood type. I ordered two of these kits (each $12 kit has two tests) so our whole family could find out what our blood types are. The included auto-lance makes it easy to draw blood (it hurts just a little, not much) and it was interesting to see how our blood types clotted differently. — MF

HealthClaudia Dawson