Around 4.5 million Britons are living in fuel poverty, a new report has warned.
Online price comparison source uSwitch.com has revealed that while energy prices rose by 15 per cent this year, basic pensions increased by just 4.38 per cent.
It claimed that this is forcing many vulnerable people to cut down on their heating costs or their spending elsewhere.
Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at uSwitch.com, said: "If the government is truly committed to breaking the stranglehold of fuel poverty in this country then it needs to work with the industry and regulator."
It is not just the cost of energy which is rising; many households have been hit by an increase in the cost of food and other living-related costs, making their household income increasingly squeezed.
For some people, this could mean that maintaining their debt becomes increasingly hard as their disposable income shrinks.
There are many options open to people whose borrowing has reached problem levels, the government lists debt management companies, informal agreements and individual voluntary arrangements as just a few of the potential routes out of debt.