3 SHTF Problems You May Not Have Thought Of

Image Source

Recently, while I was sitting at the orthodontist waiting for my kid’s braces to finally get removed, I began to think about “what if SHTF” and I we didn’t have an orthodontist (or dentist) readily available who know what to do with such things?

After all, I don’t have a clue how all that orthodontics gear works and since my youngest still has many years of orthodontics to go, I should probably get a clue. I know the braces are cemented in there somehow but besides that I’m sure I would do more harm than good if I tried to do any of it off on my own, let alone try to keep their teeth properly aligned either… that won’t happen at all, lol.

SHTF Problem #1: Your Teeth

You’d be surprised but in a truly long-term SHTF situation teeth may be a much bigger problem for many people than they realize.

Besides just having cavities, who knows what types of additional–and sometimes very serious–problems you might encounter, here’s a few I can think of:

  • Abscess teeth. I’d wrote an article a long time ago about how it killed my wife’s uncle. It’s a much bigger problem than most realize and can lead to a variety of serious health problems.
  • Crowns that come out. This would leave the root uncomfortably exposed and probably indicates a much bigger problem. While the usual SHTF remedy for “bad teeth” is to just pull it, that might not be as easy with a crown removed and probably rather painful I’d imagine.
  • Orthodontics, various appliances. Really, anytime you’re in the middle of a process that takes years to complete, I’m guessing you’d also need the knowledge to know if it’s working properly and I’m also guessing that you could quickly do more harm than good. My gut-reaction is to remove the braces (or whatever) but, again, I don’t know how.

I’m sure there are more significant problems to be aware of here and while I have various extraction tools I do wonder how useful they may be with crowns, for instance. And considering that an abscess tooth is such a problem it would be a good idea to have appropriate antibiotics.

SHTF Problem #2: Birth And Babies

This is another big concern that many of us could have but not even consider until that “surprise” hits us. Obviously, this can be minimized by having and using appropriate protection, though, there will still be plenty of instances where people will have babies post-SHTF, wanted or otherwise.

Now, women have been having babies for as long as humanity has been around and doing so relatively successfully, the process isn’t without it’s complications to say the least.

And, of course, while most people choose a hospital with all of the medical benefits… they just won’t be available or accessible in a long-term situation. About the only solution would be to befriend an OBGYN or midwife and hope for the best. Lucky for me I’m married to a midwife. 🙂

Besides concern for the baby, such as being able to resuscitate them, complications with the mother are just as serious, especially hemorrhage. Both of these problems may result in death if you don’t have a knowledgeable resource to take charge and even then the worst may happen simply because they didn’t have appropriate drugs or equipment.

Again, having babies is no joke (and fraught with many serious complications besides what I mentioned above) in good times with all of the support structure we have in place. Afterwards we’re back to hoping and praying of the best.

I won’t get into potential complications with newborns as I don’t know about these types of problems to offer any sound advice.

SHTF Problem #3: Pets

Most of us have little idea what to do when we run out of pet food and, more important, may find ourselves torn between feeding our pets from our dwindling food storage foods or not. Granted, many of us may not be torn at all and simply just feed our pets as if they’re our children. 😉

I do wonder just how well most pets (and I’m thinking of dogs and cats mostly) will do with a significant change of diet from their typical dog or cat food to all human food? I’d suspect they will manage somehow.

What about potential medical issues? Again, if there’s no vet about the best we can do is to care for them as if they’re human and then hope for the best.

For us, we have a dog and then also guinea pigs who, sadly, would be the bigger problem because they eat mostly vegetables, hay, and pellets. As much as I really like them they probably won’t last long post-SHTF.

Anyway, what problems can you think of? What SHTF concerns would you have that you may not have thought about?


No More Bicycle Flats (video)

This idea has been around for some time, it seems, but if you’re looking to NOT have to deal with bicycle flat tires consider a Bell Solid Tube Inner Tube (for 26″ tires).

They’re certainly more expensive than a traditional inner tube and obviously you’ll need to purchase the correct size for your bicycle but knowing that you won’t be stranded on the side of the road with a flat makes for a winner in my book. Plus, they’ll be like gold during SHTF situations. 🙂

Buried, Earth-Cooled Shipping Container Home – $30k Total Cost! (video)

This guy doesn’t consider himself a prepper he says but the idea is still neat to see in action. Yes, he buried the container but his purpose was to also utilize the earth to passively cool and heat the shipping container home (there are two containers buried side by side to make the home bigger). Perhaps the biggest reason to consider this is that he paid a 30K total to make it happen.

He’s made all sorts of improvements, including adding sliding doors, solar tube lighting, cabinets and a pantry, an air exchange to reduce humidity, septic, well water, and more. He actually did a great job with the space he has, in my opinion.

Throughout the video you’ll occasionally see video snippets of the build process including the “secret” to keeping the roof from caving in at about the 8:30 mark. He’s also written a book titled Off-Grid and Underground if you’re interested in his build process…

Are Hard Times Really Coming?

How often do you see posts for “living in hard times” or the “coming hard times” or something like that? I might see a new post like that once a week or so. But, are these folks right? Are hard times REALLY coming?

After all, one might suggest that things are great for most of us here in America. Sure there are exceptions but, for the vast majority of Americans, maybe you shouldn’t complain…

Water and Food

Think about how easy it is to get water. You just turn on the tap and, voila, out it comes! Despite the occasional problems such as with Flint’s water crisis or the the Ohio algae bloom a year or two back, you probably never think twice about your water. Water is simply at our fingertips 24/7.

Food is about the same. We’re living in an unprecedented age of food production, one never before seen in history. How much longer can we keep this up? I don’t know but for the time being…

We can buy a boat-load of food at our local grocery stores, purchase a variety of foods out of season, buy meals at dozens of different restaurants and fast food joints… vending machines are stocked full of it. Heck, even the Ferry rides to get to Seattle will feed me should I desire; Heaven-forbid I can’t take a 30 minute boat ride without eating. Yes, food is abundant here in America.

Shelter and Travel

Most of us have our pick of where we want to live (within reasonable driving distance, of course), what type of home to own (single family, duplex, condo, apartment, etc.), and if we’re not happy we’re just a zillow.com search away from finding our dream home. Moreover, there’s little worry about structural stability for most homes as it’s not like they’re going to collapse tomorrow, even in an earthquake. Utilities are expected to be provided and if the power goes out for more than two hours people are grouchy.

Travel is a piece of cake too. Most of us have reliable vehicles, a fairly good network of roads to get anywhere we like across the nation, gas stations are seemingly everywhere, and if we don’t want to drive we can take the bus, train, subway, airplane, motorcycle, or even the lowly bicycle. It couldn’t be easier most of the time to get around.

Medical Care

Got a stuffy nose? See the nearby Urgent Care.

Not sure what that bump is on your shoulder? There’s a Dermatologist for that.

Need your teeth cleaned? Throw a rock and you’ll hit at least a dozen dentists.

How about an appendectomy? Yup, got you covered.

And with me being forced to buy Obamacare… I’m covered too… well, maybe not quite like I was hoping for. 😉

The point is that we have an abundance of healthcare options around. Babies rarely die and it’s shocking to us when modern medicine can’t fix a problem. There was a time when people routinely died young, folks had big families because of expected infant deaths, and medicine was dispensed by your local Barber.


According to this post (and the accompanying book) we’re actually living in a age of declining violence. Sure, it doesn’t feel like that at times but, let me ask you: when’s the last time you were actually afraid to go out of your home, to travel around town, or mingle in public places because you genuinely feared for your life?

I’d be surprised if you ever did. Granted, I know bad things can and do happen to good people but, unless you live in the slums, odds are you’re fairly safe to leave your home. Heck, I still know people who don’t lock their car doors and some who don’t even lock their homes at night.

Compared to days of yesteryear we’re apparently quite safe as a whole, as a society.


Now, I’ll be the first to tell you that I truly don’t have enough money, ever. But it seems to me that whatever your financial situation is, you probably have enough to keep a roof overhead, food in your belly, and to generally live a decent lifestyle. Maybe your retirement account isn’t the best but the stock markets surely suggest otherwise.

I even recently watched a video that stated universal income quantitative easing (read: giving away free money to the masses) is coming to America. Think about that one for a moment: government will literally hand money to people just for being a citizen, oh, wait… I think we already do that… but now it will be blatantly obviously and the masses will love it.

Conclusions and Warnings

What’s to complain about? On the list of Maslow’s hierarchy of basic needs, they’re all covered quite well and then some! Compared to our ancestors we’re living an easy life and it shows.

Therein, however, lies the problem.

It’s precisely this easy lifestyle that breeds complacency. Most people think that bad things can’t or won’t happen to them, their town, or their nation. Just take a look around you the next time you’re out and about. The biggest “problem” most folks seem to have these days is that their smartphone isn’t loading YouTube videos fast enough or that the line at McDonald’s is long. That’s crazy!

I’m guessing the “powers that be” prefer it this way. They prefer to give the masses everything the want, distract them with media, fatten them up with unhealthy foods, and soon they’re easier to manipulate.

But what happens if/when hard times do come? What happens to the complacent masses then? Nothing good, that’s for sure.

Ultimately, the question is: Are Hard Times Really Coming?

Personally, I don’t see how they’re not. While I feel that economic collapse is the most likely–and most guaranteed to happen–scenario there’s also the distinct possibility of WW3 starting because of Russia and/or China… and then, of course, there’s always ISIS and North Korea stirring up trouble, to name a few more possibilities.

Although I’m surely talking to the converted, one simply cannot assume that “because times have been good that they will continue to be so,” particularly when so many signs point to trouble ahead.

What say you? Do you feel troubled times are ahead or is it business as usual?