9 Tips to Help Manage Psoriatic Arthritis
Using Time to Your Advantage
The best way to take care of your psoriatic arthritis is to get the best of both worlds: medical care from your doctor and lifestyle habits. The little things you do every day add up to make a difference in how you feel, emotionally and physically.
Get started today with these nine ideas.
1. Connect with people who “get it.” You need people in your life who you can talk to about how you’re doing."Whether with a good friend or in a group, it's very important to have a chance to voice your emotions,” therapist Madelyn Petrow-Cohen says.
2. Plan good things. Schedule time for fun. Spend time in your garden, cook a favorite meal, or go to a concert, for examples. Also give yourself time to relax. Meditation helps some people do that. It can be as simple as taking a few minutes to focus on your breathing.
3. Prep talking points. Your family and friends may not know much about psoriatic arthritis. Learn all you can, so you can help them understand what it is and what you need. For instance, they may think it’s contagious. It’s not.
4. Keep up with your treatment. Talk with your doctor about your symptoms and any problems you’ve noticed. Take your medication as prescribed. If you have any questions, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
5. Experiment with exercise. Fitness is good for everyone. Since psoriatic arthritis varies from person to person, try different activities to find what’s best for you. Maybe it’s hiking, swimming, yoga, or something else. Your doctor or a physical therapist can give you more ideas and let you know if you have any limits.
6. Check your diet. Foods don’t cause or cure psoriatic arthritis. But smart eating habits are good for everyone. If you lose extra pounds, that will take some of the pressure off your joints, too.
7. Communicate your needs. Staying on top of psoriatic arthritis takes time. You may need to take medicine, use special shampoo and skin lotion, plus make time to exercise and prepare healthy meals. If it feels like it’s too much for you, tell your doctor. She may have tips that help you save time and energy.