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The Importance of Self-Care for People With Chronic Pain

This blog is written by our guest writer, health and fitness blogger, Jennifer Birch. 

Chronic pain is an unfortunate reality for 10 per cent of the global population. For people who are living with some form of chronic pain or another, it can disrupt their personal and professional lives, as well as their ability to enjoy their daily life. Reducept founder Louis Zantema’s message is that people living with chronic pain are far from powerless and there are many strategies to positively influence pain. Regularly practising good habits is key to coping, and one such practice that influences feelings, behaviour, attention, and thoughts is self-care.

What is self-care?

Self-care entails taking the time to attend to your needs. It helps you recharge and get away from all the stresses of life. Without a doubt, it's a necessary component in anyone's life.

Everyone’s self-care ritual is different — it’s a highly personalized experience. And for people with chronic pain, it should be tailor-fit to their conditions and current lifestyle. Take note that self-care is more than just relaxation and it’s not an excuse to indulge in destructive habits. Instead, it should be a routine to promote your overall wellbeing.



What are some self-care practises?

The most important kind of self-care involves how you deal with your condition. Managing your symptoms and doing what you can to minimize them is an important aspect of your health. Attending your doctor’s appointments and taking prescribed medication and therapy is of course part of it. But it can also include choosing to stay home when you get flare-ups, being more selective with what you eat, and avoiding things that trigger your chronic pain.

Another way to care for yourself is to keep a pain diary. A guide to pain diaries on News Medical says that it's a space to record patterns and triggers in how you experience pain. This can allow you to be more mindful of your triggers and help your physician develop a deeper understanding of your condition. All you need is a notebook where you can document your experiences and you can pave the way to more effective pain management.

One simple self-care practice involves following a skincare routine. Everyday Health shares that a skincare routine can provide some stability to our daily lives — a source of familiarity and comfort. With chronic conditions disrupting your life, it can be nice to have something stable in your daily rituals. With that in mind, there are plenty of skincare staples that you could incorporate into your daily routine to look good and feel good. A moisturizer is a good place to start building a skincare routine around. Pretty Me’s review of the AR vitamin E Cream highlights that this face and body moisturizer is compatible with all skin types. If you’re suffering from dry skin as a side effect of your pain medication, moisturizing can do wonders to improve it. You should also look at getting a basic facial wash, a gentle cleanser, and sunscreen for daily use. Though these products may not help your chronic pain, looking after your skincare can do wonders for your confidence and general wellbeing.

Another self-care option is to invest in a weighted blanket. Verywell Health's feature on weighted blankets writes that, while there aren't any studies on how it alleviates chronic pain, it's proven to reduce anxiety and help with insomnia. Weighted blankets offer a form of pressure therapy, which utilizes bodily senses, particularly touch, to lessen stress. This can help you look forward to when the day's over and you can finally snuggle up under the covers.

Again, self-care is a highly personalized routine but these are good places to start creating your own daily ritual. Self-care may be an overused term at this point, but it truly is a great way to boost your health, be it physical or emotional.

Exclusively written for reducept.com
by Jennifer Birch


The Importance of Self-Care for People With Chronic Pain

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