It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and it’s truly an exciting season as we all gather for annual get-togethers. But for some people, it’s also the busiest time of the year — perhaps a little bit too busy that they always forget how to take care of themselves.
According to Frances Prescilla Cuevas, Chief Health Program Officer of the Department of Health’s National Mental Health Program, the holidays can bring about feelings of anxiety and depression or “holiday blues,” which may be temporary but should still be taken seriously. Some factors mentioned causing this can be the financial burden of gift giving or having to visit relatives.
Those who have others depending on or have expectations from them are likely the ones to feel the extra pressure during the holidays, especially women belonging to the “sandwich generation” – the 30- to 45-year-olds taking care of both their growing kids and aging parents. On top of work and household responsibilities, we can only imagine how overwhelming their day-to-day could be in terms of responsibilities and finances let alone the holidays.
In fact, The Parenting Index survey in Switzerland found that for Filipinos, societal and internal pressure comes from traditional, collectivist culture, strong family ties, and the demands of balancing childcare and work to help provide and care for the family. The survey also showed that most Filipinos live with extended families. These pressures can leave no time for self-care and can cause a great amount of stress, which would lead to health problems.
It is difficult for the women belonging to the sandwich generation to even begin thinking about taking care of themselves. Starting this holiday season, show your appreciation and remind the important women in your life to relax once in a while and if possible, provide the escape they may need yourself – treat them to a day out such as a spa day, shopping spree, or a vacation getaway – to thank them for their sacrifices throughout the year.
However, you can also consider giving them holistic self-care by alleviating more of their long-term worries in the coming months and even years. A health insurance plan that can protect them and their loved ones against unexpected diseases and emergencies can benefit them financially and mentally in the long-term.
For instance, AXA offers Health Care Access, a comprehensive health insurance plan that covers all possible healthcare needs from prevention care and diagnosis to hospitalization and treatments. Some plans even have teleconsultation and mental health services included — truly something worth having.
Meanwhile, according to another report by Statista, the top illnesses that cause mortality in Filipinos and women are ischemic heart or coronary artery disease, cancer with the top being lung, breast, and colon, and pneumonia. With proper care and awareness, these life-threatening diseases can be prevented.
AXA has health plans that cover exams to diagnose certain critical illnesses in order to be treated immediately. They also have more affordable health insurance offerings, such as their Health Start Lite plan, which costs as low as P535 a month — and this already covers the top three critical illnesses, namely cancer, stroke, and heart attack, and nine minor critical illnesses that women may also be susceptible to.
For more coverage for your loved one, AXA’s Health Start plan has coverage on critical illnesses, specifically cancers, that are common to women. This is beneficial for mothers as they can have the option to share the coverage with their child.
AXA also offers the Global Health Access plan which has best-in-class worldwide health coverage of up to PHP 100 million and includes the diagnosis and prevention of women-specific illnesses through extensive health screening and outpatient benefits, coverage against cancers, reimbursement supplements, and most importantly — cash benefits for pregnant women.
Taking care of one’s health is an important part of self-care. Starting this holiday season, share this reminder to the important women in your life and encourage them to leave space for their own health and wellness, too. The simple act of gifting them a health insurance plan gives them security and peace of mind against health issues so they can focus on what matters most – enjoying quality time with their family and loved ones, and pursuing their personal passions.
“Every day we see a lot of people challenging others on how to take care of themselves, and this ironically resulted in giving more pressure for each of us,” said AXA Philippines Chief Marketing Officer Nandy Villar.
“People don’t need another preacher, but a partner. And AXA aims to be that partner to everyone. We truly understand the tension and struggles the sandwich generation are facing in achieving holistic health,” Villar continued.
For more information on AXA’s health offerings, visit www.axa.com.ph/health-protection/global-health-access, www.axa.com.ph/healthstart, and www.axa.com.ph/health-protection/health-care-access
 “Holiday Blues Are Real, But You Can Beat Them.” https://www.onenews.ph/articles/holiday-blues-are-real-but-you-can-beat-them