The Way We Spend

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Time and money are the currencies of life. Money is used to buy something of perceived value or need, and time is used in much the same way.

What people spend their time and money on varies from person to person and highlights their areas of priority. There are as many different ways to spend time and money as there are different types of people.

Nonetheless, there are similarities and trends across society at large that can still highlight the most common ways we spend our money and time.


According to a report by Business Insider, Americans spent most of their money in three areas: housing, transportation, and food. This makes sense, as these areas fill a basic human need for safety, shelter, and sustenance. We need roofs over our heads to shelter us from the elements; we need jobs to afford our homes; and we need food to stay alive.

If you dive further into consumer culture, you can break out of these three areas even further by identifying the types of housing, transportation, and food that is consumed by people of all socioeconomic statuses and the ratio of spending for each. But when looking at Americans as a whole, housing, transportation, and food are the top three areas of spending.


Another similarity we all have is that spending on healthcare, education, personal care, and reading is way down on the list. The popular saying “health is wealth” comes to mind here. Without health, energy, and feeling of well-being, life can’t be lived to the fullest. If we’re constantly sick or stressed, it takes a toll on our family, social and professional life. Shelter and food are critical to survival, and good health is critical to your quality of life. What if you could do small things that created a big impact on your overall health and well-being? Focus your time and financial resources to investing in these things and you can reap the benefits for a lifetime.


You can take a proactive approach to maintaining good health by intentionally caring for physical, mental and spiritual health. Regular exercise, good nutrition, and time spent doing what you love with the people you love are staples to healthy living.

Among one of the most important ways to care for your physical health is making oral health a priority. Numerous studies have proven the link between good oral health and total body health.

The opposite is also true: Poor oral health leads to various health issues, such as heart attack, stroke, poorly controlled diabetes, and preterm labor. The foods you eat contribute to your total body health and the health of your teeth and gums, so be sure to feed your body nutritious food. Sugary drinks and foods can lead to gum disease or make it progress faster. Here’s a great resource to help you build a power plate to fuel your body.

The Centers for Disease Control reports that heart disease, cancer, and diabetes account for 75% of the nation’s health spending. These chronic diseases can be largely preventable by taking the appropriate steps to get screened and maintain regular check-ups.

And this includes getting regular check-ups of your mouth and teeth, too. Your oral health can give a good indication of your overall health, so it’s critical that you visit your dentist for biannual professional check-ups and cleanings. This could arguably save you from serious diseases or catch them early so they’re treatable.

The Centers for Disease Control reports that Americans use preventive care at about half the recommended rate. If you consider the prevailing cultural spending habits mentioned above, this isn’t surprising. But you can take steps now to avoid being part of that statistic.

The Bela Family Dentistry of White Knoll team can help you avoid dental disease through routine preventive care. If you’re a new patient, you’ll receive a comprehensive oral evaluation to assess the current state of your mouth, teeth, and gums. At each six-month hygiene visit, your hygienist and dentist will give another oral evaluation to monitor the health of your mouth. We use advanced dental technology like CariVu™ to detect decay early before disease advances. Prevention and early detection keep you healthier and happier, which is our primary goal.


Curious about how your spending habits rank in comparison with the national average? Check out Mint, an app that lets you easily track what and how much you’re spending so you can put better balance your finances. You can gain a better grasp on how you spend your money so you can make the necessary adjustments to lead a fuller, healthier life.


Interested to see how much we collectively spend on pizza, binging at food trucks, lighting fireworks, or treating stress-related illnesses? Check out this cool article on Mental Floss that breaks down the spending on more offbeat things.

Let the team at Bela Family Dentistry of White Knoll care for your oral and total body health through preventive, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry. Contact us today to schedule your visit!


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