If you have been diagnosed with a long-term illness, the future can look frightening and unnerving, but once you move past the initial shock, it can be hugely beneficial to learn how to cope with the day to day stresses of living with a chronic illness.
Keeping active and staying healthy is key, so here is a guide on how to live well and learning how to cope with a chronic illness.
Understand Your Treatment
Coping with a chronic illness can be incredibly stressful and worrying. To help reduce stress levels, being involved and aware of your treatment can help.
Make sure to explore all the different types of treatment options available, as well as develop strong relationships with your treatment providers. If you have any questions about your treatment, don’t hesitate to ask. It’s also crucial that you have treatment providers who you can confide in and trust.
Follow a Balanced Diet
We all know how important it is to follow a balanced diet. Good nutrition can be hugely beneficial for your physical and mental health, helping you to retain a positive mindset and be optimistic about what lies ahead.
If your treatment provider gives you special dietary instructions, make sure that you follow them.
There are all sorts of foods and meal plans that you can incorporate into your diet too. Eating paleo can be fun and can help make your meal planning that little bit easier. Making small but subtle changes to your diet can have a huge impact on your physical and mental wellbeing.
Learn to Accept Your Illness
Many people who have been diagnosed with a chronic illness will ask the question ‘why me?’, but staying in this mindset will only set you back, so gaining control of your illness and coming to terms with it is the first step that you need to take in order to be more hopeful for the future.
Learning to accept what you have can give you the tools you need to live a healthy and happy life.
Having a close support network of family and friends can be a massive help. Knowing there’s someone there at the other end of the phone can make you feel more comfortable and relaxed. If you don’t feel comfortable speaking to people you know, why not reach out to a support group instead?
Engaging with others who are in the same boat as you can make the world of difference, enabling you to share your thoughts, opinions, and concerns. If you’re not ready to speak in person, you may benefit from using an online support group which gives you the option of anonymity.
Living with a chronic illness can be tough, and you will find that some days are easier to cope with than others. From the moment you wake up, try and find something that you’re grateful for. Even if you can only find one thing, being grateful and thankful to be alive can change your attitude and outlook on life.
While it can be all too easy to compare yourself with others, getting pleasure out of life can really help. Whether it be taking up a hobby or doing some volunteering work, there are lots of things that you can do to boost your spirits.
If you have been diagnosed with a chronic illness, it can be hard to look positively towards the future, however, being involved in your treatment, sticking to a healthy, balanced diet, learning to accept your illness, as well as having a strong support network around you can make a huge difference and help you on your journey.