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Living with a Chronic Illness and Managing the Stress It Causes

Apart from being diagnosed with a terminal illness, being diagnosed with a chronic illness can upend one’s status quo.

While it’s understandable to feel disorientated and retreat in your shell during the first few days of being told the news, it’s important to learn how to properly manage to live with a chronic illness.

Living with a chronic illness does not mean that it is the end of the world, and it certainly does not mean that you have to stress out about it every day.

Stressing out about your condition may even aggravate it. While it is true that having a long-term health condition can make you more susceptible to health hazards, you can still have a good quality of life.

So, how can you manage the stress caused by living with a chronic illness?

Educate yourself about your condition

Living with a chronic illness might mean you will have to deal with pain or discomfort caused by the symptoms of your illness, or maybe even side effects from any drugs you are taking to manage your condition.

This is why it is helpful to be more knowledgeable about your condition, your symptoms, treatment options and whether you will qualify for these options.

Asking your physician about your chronic illness is a good start, but it’s also prudent to look for information elsewhere. In fact, many medical malpractice lawsuits usually stem from improper diagnosis or treatment.

Medical malpractice lawyers like those at have had many experiences dealing with patients being misdiagnosed or given the wrong treatment plan. So look for resources online, in the library, or even asking a second opinion from another physician to help you get a better picture of what you are dealing with.

Learn to manage yourself

There won’t always be people around who will be there to comfort you, or assist you when taking your medication or when you need to go to any medical facility for tests or therapy.

While there are situations that really do require the assistance of a friend, a family member, or even the doctor, there are also situations where you can take control and be independent.

This can be something as simple as setting up reminders regarding when to take your medication, or when your next appointment with the doctor will be.

It’s also important for anyone living with a chronic illness to feel like they still have control over their lives. Learning to be self-sufficient is important when it comes to living with a chronic illness.

The more you feel like you can do things on your own, the more confident you will feel about your ability to manage the stress caused by the symptoms of your condition.

Manage your emotions

Having a long-term health condition, it’s very easy to fall into the trap of negativity and despair. Feelings of rage, fear, depression, and anxiety will come and go. If not managed carefully, you may end up feeling unable to live your life in the best way possible.

Explore different stress management techniques and learn how to work through any emotions that you might feel at any one time.

You can, of course, start by going through therapy with a licensed psychologist to help you discover the best techniques that will work for you. Your doctor may recommend engaging in physical exercise, deep breathing, and meditation, or even writing or art therapy to help you manage your emotions.

While being diagnosed with a chronic illness means that you will have to change the way you live your life, it does not necessarily mean your quality of life is diminished.

So long as you are following your doctor’s orders, listening to your body, and incorporating self-care into your daily choices, you can still enjoy life without being too stressed about having a chronic illness.