Inexpensive neck massager

My husband has suffered from chronic neck pain for a few years. He does posture exercises and uses a cervical pillow, but could not find a way to massage the pressure points that radiate pain up and down his neck. Then he found this cheap and wonderfully designed neck massager ($12) and can not stop touting its effectiveness. He loves it so much he even packed it and brought it on our current overseas trip. — CD

HealthClaudia Dawson
Cheaper than insurance

Sometimes you can purchase a prescription drug yourself for less money than paying your insurance co-pay. And when you buy, drug prices vary wildly between retailers. Go to GoodRx website to find the cheapest source for a drug, including online pharmacies. They also supply coupons at steeply discounted prices, up to 80% off (their biz model). It’s free, no account or personal info required. — KK

HealthClaudia Dawson
Superglue first aid

I use superglue (cyanoacrylate) to close small cuts and stop them bleeding. Dab it dry, apply glue, hold together. You can use any kind of “krazy glue” occasionally for first aid; it’s really handy in a workshop. Sometimes instead of stitches doctors use an expensive variant of cyanoacrylate called Dermabond, which is medical grade glue. Second best is cheaper vet-grade glue, Vetbond, which some also use to heal skin cracks. — KK

HealthClaudia Dawson
Why is it so important for you to have a baby?

Last year I made the very important decision to not have children. This quiz helped me figure out the true reasons I wanted to be a parent and I realized that those reasons were not really aligned with what I wanted for my life. After that came a lot of reading and therapy before I became confident that this was the best decision I ever made for myself. So in case anyone else is on the fence, here’s a place to start. — CD

HealthClaudia Dawson
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