Living with a chronic illness isn’t always easy. Ask any one of the 26 million people living LTCs (Long Term Conditions) in the UK or the 10 million who live with two or more. Chronic health conditions include asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, chronic fatigue, arthritis, high blood pressure and many more.
Chronic illness can impact your life in many different ways, so finding a workaround to make things easier and more manageable can support you in living your life as easily as possible in a way that works for you, not against you.
These tips can help you make life easier when living with a chronic illness.
It doesn’t matter what you are diagnosed with; researching everything you can will give you a better idea of what you are facing and what help is available, if any. Talk to your doctor and find helpful websites based on your condition, such as Making Diabetes Easier. Look for clinical studies and medical guides; don’t just go off websites not based on medical facts or built for fear-mongering.
Knowing your personal limits can help you adjust your lifestyle to allow you to do what you need to do without pushing yourself too far. Some illnesses might not require much of a lifestyle change. Still, others, such as Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue, can significantly impact your life and require you to learn how to pace yourself and accommodate your limitations. Be aware of what pushes your body over its limits and what you are capable of doing without taking things too far.
Support can come in many different ways. You can find support from family and friends, or you can join support groups and connect with others who are experiencing the same struggles you are. It is essential you have people you can talk to, rely on and share how you are feeling. This can help you to make sense of your life, get tips and tricks for others and support your mental health at the same time.
Eating a well-balanced diet, getting as much sleep as possible, exercising as much as you are able, or just loving more can help your body stay fit and healthy despite the extra demands your health conditions are putting on it. Exercise and movement can be anything you are physically capable of and don’t exacerbate your requirements or cause flare-ups.
From bed or chair exercises to yoga, swimming, walking or the gym if you can manage it.
Try to find out what foods are beneficial, if any and what you should avoid; research suggests that nightshade foods aren’t ideal for people with autoimmune diseases or inflammatory conditions. Elimination diets can help you point out anything that might make you feel worse or rule out your diet as a source of your symptoms.
Living with a chronic illness or health condition isn’t easy. In the first instance, talk to a medical professional for suggestions on how to change your symptoms and lifestyle for an enhanced quality of life. From here, you can make changes that will benefit you.
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