A chronic condition, lasting longer than six months, can be very frustrating to live with. These conditions can include illness, osteoporosis, pain, arthritis, heart issues, diabetes, and many others. Chronic conditions affect your quality of life and can affect your family’s as well. If, because of a chronic condition, a person cannot participate in the daily activities that make them happy, it can be exhausting both physically and emotionally.
Although physicians and psychologists can help provide some relief to these problems, if you are not in a location that can cater to these needs, chronic conditions can be even more difficult to deal with. However, there are several ways in which you can learn to better cope with and even lessen your condition to make living your life easier and more enjoyable.
Decrease Stress Levels
A diagnosis of a chronic condition can be very psychologically taxing and lead to frustration, sadness and depression, and anxiety. Combined with the condition itself, these emotions can lead to high levels of stress. Stress can be managed in many ways including meditation or deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, and ensuring an adequate amount of sleep each night. It is also important to remember that any emotions you are experiencing from your diagnosis are completely normal.
Exercise and Weight Loss
If possible, exercising can be a great mechanism to deal with and respond to a chronic condition. A healthy diet and exercise can provide many benefits including increased strength, weight loss, and improved overall health. Strong muscles and weight loss will lead to a healthier heart and lifestyle, as well as relieve joint pain that may be associated with your condition. Making positive health choices in everyday life can help you live a longer and happier life.
One of the healthiest forms of exercise you can do is to participate in Yoga. Yoga has been practiced for thousands of years, and the health benefits are astounding. Not only does it keep you physically in shape, but it can provide you with greater focus and mental clarity. It can be done anywhere and anytime, but it’s typically a good idea to start with an instructor or in a class – especially if your condition can hamper your mobility. Many individuals with chronic health conditions have been able to practice yoga, however, so it’s no beyond your reach.
Cut Out Alcohol and Cigarettes
While dealing with chronic conditions, taking proper care of your body is very important. Getting a good night of sleep can be very difficult, and alcohol can further contribute to this issue. Cigarettes limit blood circulation to damaged tissues in the body, causing increased pain and discomfort. Eliminating alcohol and cigarette use can provide increased quality of life and can help you better manage your condition.
Locate a Support Group
Living with a chronic condition is never easy, and you are not alone in your struggles. It is important to find other people in your local community and in support groups online that you can reach out to. Having a group of others in your same situation can be a great benefit to help get through tough times and answer any questions that you may have.
Finding Reliable Local Care
Even if you live in a small town, being aware of the available healthcare services nearby is important. Consider working with a group like the Rural Health Services Consortium Inc. or someone similar to see what options you have. When selecting a primary care physician, consider visiting multiple providers in order to find one that you feel you connect with and that understands you and the pain you are dealing with. This important relationship will ensure that you are receiving quality, personalized healthcare.
If you feel that your town has inadequate care, consider making scheduled visits to a larger city to see healthcare professional for checkups. Seeing a quality doctor for periodic checkups will help reduce the risk of any major unforeseen health complications in the future, and you will be able to receive the excellent healthcare that you deserve. These visits will also ensure that you are consistently managing your condition as effectively as possible.
Being diagnosed with a chronic condition is difficult to deal with and takes its toll on daily life. Though it may seem overwhelming at times, there are steps you can take to reduce and cope with it. Through seeking the support of others and implementing behaviors that positively affect your health, you can help alleviate the stresses of your chronic condition and improve your quality of life.