Arthritis Self-Management: What You Need to Know
Follow these six self-management habits to help you take control of your arthritis.
If you’ve been diagnosed with arthritis, you’ll may need to have several healthcare professionals involved in your care. But the most important person on your healthcare team is you. Simply put, self-management of arthritis is what you do to manage your disease.
Self-management is about making positive and healthy lifestyle choices and addressing the physical and emotional effects of arthritis. Having arthritis affects everyone differently, so it’s up to you to learn and practice what helps you to live well and thrive.
Through self-management, you can make a big difference in how much arthritis affects your quality of life, so you can continue to say Yes to the things that are important to you.
Being diagnosed can be a lot to handle but rest assured, you can do it. Learn all you can about your disease. Make your doctor your partner in care and maintain an open line of communication. Pay attention to your emotions and develop a support network of family, friends and colleagues. Determine what you may need to change (whether its activities, diet, exercise or stress level). Make a plan with your doctor, write it down and ask your support network to help you keep on track.
Here are six important self-management habits that can help you successfully manage your disease:
1. Be organized
2. Manage pain and fatigue
3. Stay active
4. Balance activity with rest
5. Eat a healthy balanced diet
6. Improve sleep
If you invest in yourself and recognize your responsibility – and ability – to take good care of yourself, you can live well with arthritis. You’ll need to adjust, but make sure your goals are realistic, even if they involve only small steps right now.
No one can take care of you better than you can. The Arthritis Foundation wants to be your self-management partner as you manage your disease and provides information and resources for living with arthritis
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