Take Time to Pamper Yourself With Chronic Illness

The holidays can take a lot out of you. Don’t forget to make time for yourself.

Take Time to Pamper Yourself With Chronic Illness

Lana Barhum is a legal assistant, patient advocate, freelance writer, blogger, and single parent. She has lived with rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia since 2008 and uses her experiences to share expert advice on living successfully with chronic illness.

Everyone needs to practice self-love and self-care regularly. And for those of us with health issues, this is even more important. Pampering yourself is one of the best ways to relieve stress, and it could help you manage your chronic condition’s symptoms too.

Most of us tell ourselves that we are too busy, or we find other excuses to put off pampering ourselves. But unless we intentionally make the time and remove guilt, we will only keep telling ourselves the same lies and not give ourselves the attention we need.

Find the time

If your life is as overscheduled as most are, it can be difficult to find time for yourself. Your lunch hour is a good time to focus on yourself. Or try waking up a little earlier than everyone else, or temporarily disconnecting from your gadgets.

You don’t have to find big chunks of time; just start off small and see what happens. Hopefully, the more time you steal to pamper yourself, the more often you will want to do it.

Read more at http://www.diabeticconnect.com/diabetes-information-articles/general/2263-take-time-to-pamper-yourself-with-chronic-illness#GsLTw4YAWibZ4VW6.99

7 Realities for People With Chronic Illness

How we face the misconceptions and stigma around fibromyalgia.

7 Realities for People With Chronic Illness

“Disabled” and “handicapped” aren’t two words society often associates with people who aren’t visibly disabled, but live with chronic illness and pain. There is a notion that in order to be sick, there must be evident, visible signs, such as assistive devices or mobility issues. Our society often ignores the existence of chronic illness, especially when diseases are invisible and/or don’t fit in the mainstream ideal of what being sick should look like.

At least 10 percent of the United States population is considered invisibly disabled according to Disabled World. The outside world sees chronically ill people as normal and assumes they function at the same level as healthy people do because their symptoms are often not seen.

Read more at http://www.fibromyalgiaconnect.com/fibromyalgia-articles/484-7-realities-for-people-with-chronic-illness#zyqsrdvfVBtcZAJY.99

5 Ways to Have a Social Life With Chronic Illness

 5 Ways to Have a Social Life With Fibromyalgia

Lana Barhum is a legal assistant, patient advocate, freelance writer, blogger, and single parent. She has lived with rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia since 2008 and uses her experiences to share expert advice on living successfully with chronic illness.

Research indicates that people with chronic illness don’t participate as much in social activities and instead prefer private time, normally spent alone. However, people with chronic illness can benefit from having a healthy social life, according to a study of 250 adults published in The Journals of Gerontology. In the study, older adults who continued to participate in social activities, even after limitations made it more challenging to do so, had a more positive outlook on life than those who weren’t participating. This doesn’t just apply to older adults—young adults aren’t participating either. In fact, many are frustrated and angry about their inability to be socially and physically active.

Read more at http://www.fibromyalgiaconnect.com/fibromyalgia-articles/491-5-ways-to-have-a-social-life-with-fibromyalgia#xyeg1BsDJkmkKLIB.99

13 Rheumatoid Arthritis Life Hacks Written by Healthline Editorial Team

Living with RA can present its share of difficulty. But with a little bit of innovation and determination, you’ll find new ways to get things done. Make everyday tasks and pain management easier with these 13 clever life hacks from the Healthline RA community.

1. Carry a little pair of scissors to open packs of condiments at restaurants. You can even find scissors designed to reduce hand strain, which is great for people with arthritis.

READ MORE at http://www.healthline.com/health/rheumatoid-arthritis/life-hacks.

What You Need to Know About the Rheumatoid Factor

The rheumatoid factor (RF) test can help evaluate your RA diagnosis and prognosis.

What You Need to Know About the Rheumatoid Factor

Rheumatoid factor (RF) is the antibody responsible for the body attacking its own tissues in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In most cases, high levels of rheumatoid factor (20 IU/mL or above) occur in patients who have rheumatoid arthritis and/or Sjögren’s syndrome. The higher the RF, the worse the disease and the greater potential for joint damage and disability.

RF is evaluated when doctors suspect any form of arthritis. If someone is positive for RF, it doesn’t always mean that the patient has RA, but negative results do not rule it out either. However, in combination with RA symptoms, the RF test plays an important role in both diagnosis and prognosis of RA.

Read More at http://www.rheumatoidconnect.com/rheumatoid-arthritis-articles/322-what-you-need-to-know-about-the-rheumatoid-factor?category=treatment+and+care

Loving Your Body With Fibromyalgia

Tips on how to accept and cherish your body.

Loving Your Body With Fibromyalgia

Most of us are obsessed with appearance and body image, which is understandable. After all, attractive people in our society are at an advantage. This is also the same society that often stigmatizes chronic diseases and those suffering from them through pity, disbelief and blame. The focus on outer beauty, the stigma against sick people, and the experience of being chronically ill in and of itself all have a negative impact on body image.

Body Image and Self-Concept

People with chronic illness have a greater risk for negative body image. An astounding 80 percent of American women with and without chronic illness are dissatisfied with their appearance. Men can also suffer from poor body image; at least 10 million men in the United States experience some type of eating disorder in their life, according to the National Eating Disorders Association.

Read more at http://www.fibromyalgiaconnect.com/fibromyalgia-articles/482-loving-your-body-with-fibromyalgia#BGwIUWuyxiT86QzD.99

7 Ways to Overcome Your Fears About Your Chronic Illness

Learn how to tame your worries about your health and arthritis with these simple coping techniques.

7 Ways to Overcome Your Fears About Your Chronic Illness

Most of us worry about our health because we have loved ones to care for, we don’t want to be dependent on anyone, and we don’t want to give up the things we love. But when you have a chronic illness, you have even more to be concerned about regarding your health. You might feel angry, helpless, and even afraid.

I consider myself an expert on the fear brought upon by rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia because I have learned to overcome and manage my worries alongside my health challenges for the past eight years. I also know that being afraid is one of the most common reactions to forced changes but it isn’t something you should let consume your life.

Read about the 7 ways to overcome fears about your chronic illness at http://www.arthritisconnect.com/arthritis-articles/656-7-ways-to-overcome-your-fears-about-your-chronic-illness#Dur8plpB3PZfo5VW.99


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