How to Help a Loved One with Arthritis

Living with arthritis can be an isolating experience. In fact, 87% of surveyed arthritis patients stated that their loved ones don’t understand their disease and the difficulties of living with it. For family members and friends who aren’t living with arthritis, it can be tough to grasp just how severe the symptoms can be and the extent to which they can make everyday life more challenging and complicated.

If you have a loved one with arthritis, it can be helpful to educate yourself about their diagnosis and to actively take steps toward offering help for arthritis-related challenges.

Engaging in Open Communication

Although it’s helpful to learn more about your loved one’s type of arthritis, it’s important to remember that every patient is different. Talk to your loved one and ask about their symptoms and challenges. Ask them directly how you can best support them.

Offering Practical Help

Although everyone’s needs are different, many arthritis patients can benefit from practical assistance. Ask your loved one if they need help for arthritis-related challenges. For example, you might offer:

  • Help preparing healthy meals or running errands
  • Assistance with childcare and housework
  • Transportation to and from the rheumatologist and other medical appointments

Understanding Your Limitations

It’s not possible for one person to do everything necessary to support a patient living with arthritis, no matter how well-intentioned you may be. Try to build a community of support for your loved one. There are helpful technological tools aimed at organizing practical support in the wake of difficult diagnoses, such as CaringBridge and Lotsa Helping Hands.

In addition, know that sometimes your loved one might simply need to talk and vent about their pain and other problems. They might not necessarily need you to try to fix everything, but they need you to understand what they’re going through.

Compassionate Help for Arthritis Patients in Wake County

At Empowered Arthritis and Rheumatology in Cary, NC, you’ll find compassionate rheumatologists who truly do understand how difficult it can be to live with arthritis. Through innovative therapies, collaborative disease monitoring, and extensive patient education, we can help you or your loved one live life well despite an arthritis diagnosis.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment in our comfortable office.

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