financialcounselor

Money worries give 36-yr-old man a heart attack

In Lesson of the Day on October 17, 2010 at 3:06 pm

Doctor advises he smoke to calm down 

  Doctors tell us that stress can be a leading cause of health problems. And we all know that money problems can be a leading cause of stress.
  I was reminded of this recently by a client who told me that he had recently suffered a heart attack. This man is only 36 years old.
  This client, Dave, took a cut in his work hours a year earlier, and he had fallen behind on his house payments because of it. Dave was worried sick about losing the house, understandably, as his mortgage company had been threatening to start foreclosure proceedings.
  After the heart attack, lying in his hospital bed, Dave’s doctors told him that they could find nothing physically wrong with him. They told him the only thing that could have caused his heart attack was the stress in his life.
  “My wife supports me, my kids are good kids, I don’t have any other problems,” he said. “I just made myself sick over the situation with the house. It never stops. You go to bed worrying about it, and you wake up worrying about it.
  “My doctor told me I’m in good health otherwise. No cholesterol problems. They said my organs are all good.”
  Dave, who smokes, told me that his doctor actually advised him to go ahead and smoke a few cigarettes a day if it helps him to keep calm. When does a doctor ever advise that? “He (the doctor) told me it would be better for me to smoke a little if it prevents another heart attack.”
 
  So keep this story in mind if money trouble has you lying awake at night. I know nobody thinks this when the creditors are constantly calling, and I know it sounds corny, but life and health are more precious than money.

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  1. I’m a doctor (of philosophy) and I give this advice all the time.

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