Thursday, June 14, 2012

Osteoarthritis Disability - How to Cope and Keep Your Friends

Osteoarthritis disability is frustrating and painful.

Although it originally starts with mild pain and some difficulty of movement, eventually you might end up not being able to do many things you were able to do before.

You might not be able to take long walks, or go jogging anymore when your knee is involved. If you enjoy knitting and crocheting it might get too painful to do it for any amount of time if at all. You don't lose the capability of doing things suddenly, overnight. It creeps up on you gradually.

There are different ways to cope with arthritis:

see a physiotherapist who can teach you how to cope and show you ways how to relieve the pain
use a heating pad on the affected joint to relieve the pain somewhat
wear a brace on the affected joint
try some arthritis creams and see if any help
take natural pain relief products
keep your sense of humor

Family and friends will be very sympathetic and helpful when you really have an arthritis disability. Don't be a "me do" person. Let me explain what a "me do" person is. It's a person who cannot accept help gracefully. They feel they need to do things themselves. and they're taking away the opportunity to have somebody else feel good about him/herself. Soon people will stop offering help because you have refused to be helped.

And then there are the people who will demand help, even for things they could do for themselves. They'll complain constantly and make sure they are not the only ones "suffering". Everybody around them has to suffer along with them.

It's all a matter of attitude. Besides, they are not the only ones that have an osteoarthritis disability. People tend to start avoiding other people that complain and whine constantly.

Your disability is only as severe as you decide it to be. You have to learn to balance things. Be gracious and let people help you when they sincerely offer it. But don't be demanding and expect people to do everything for you.