How do women with rheumatoid arthritis handle caring for a newborn when their RA is flaring? That was the question asked in the WebMD Rheumatoid Arthritis Community by a woman who was expecting a baby in a month.
The good news from other women: It may be difficult to imagine, but it’s possible. They offered these practical tips:
- Get baby clothes that are pull-on and use snaps instead of buttons or zippers.
- Put an infant swing or seat by the bathtub so you can soak your joints in the morning.
- Set up a command station by a rocking chair, where you keep handy items like washcloths, a glass of water, and a phone.
- Make good nutrition easy: At the grocery store, buy bags of washed and ready-cut vegetables for salads, and rotisserie chicken, for example.
- Put items such as baby clothes and diapers in baskets instead of drawers for easier access.
- Nap when the baby naps.
Above all, take care of yourself and get help, the parents with RA said. Join a mothers’ group or call on family, friends, or church members. People are eager to help out, one person assured her. You can take care of the baby, another said, as long as you have a support network to help take care of you.