Since 1998 there have been cost changes that are highly noticeable for those living in today's economy vs. yester year, with some prices of medical care, child care and college rising exponentially.

According to data collected from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics by HowMuch, a personal finance site, the top categories of items that have gone up are things that are needed most to survive in a modern Western society.

Here's the top things that increased in price the most and by how much:

  1. Hospital Services:  Changed in price +225% from 1998 to 2018.
  2. College Tuition & Fees: Changed in price +180% from 1998 to 2018.
  3. College Textbooks: Changed in price +150% from 1998 to 2018.
  4. Child Care & Nursery School: Changed in price +115% from 1998 to 2018.
  5. Medical Care Services: Changed in price +115% from 1998 to 2018.

The items that are more affordable and have changed in price include:

  1. Televisions: Changed in price by -100% from 1998 to 2018.
  2. Toys: Changed in price by -60% from 1998 to 2018.
  3. Computer Software: Changed in price by -60% from 1998 to 2018.
  4. Wireless Telephone Services: Changed in price by -50% from 1998 to 2018.
  5. Apparel, clothes: Changed in price by -10% from 1998 to 2018.

The data accounts for inflation and reveals what has become more expensive here in the United States.

The data also included hourly earnings increasing 75% in the last twenty years which ran parallel to the increases of housing, food and beverages while cars, clothing and furniture stayed relatively the same.