The Month Ahead: Taking Care of You and Yours with RA

  • We've entered the lazy, hazy days of summer here in the northern hemisphere and I for one am basking in it. You all know how I hate wearing socks…


    August is traditionally a month of intense indolence, absorbing as much of summer as we can. We store up the warmth, the feel of flip-flops and the taste of a ripe, juicy peach, enough to last us through the winter. It's also the last month of summer vacation and all around us, children are very determinedly not thinking about back-to-school. Conversely, parents are counting down the days. We have some great back-to-school posts in our archives that can help you plan for getting the kids back-to-school. Are you thinking of upgrading your own education? If so, we also have a post about going back to school with RA. Throughout the month of August, other sites on HealthCentral will also feature posts on going back to school, either as a child or adult with a medical condition or information to help parents.

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    Going back to school is about planning ahead, looking into the future and thinking of where you want yourself and your family to be. It's about assessing what you need to get there. This made us think of other ways of planning for the future. Thinking ahead often brings us to thoughts of how to take care not only of ourselves, but also our loved ones.


    Taking care of yourself involves not just your physical health, but your emotional health, as well. This month, V will focus on physical health, telling us about her recent experience with physical therapy. For many of us, going on vacation, even short trips away, are part of safeguarding our emotional health. Traveling with RA and all the accoutrements that comes with it — medication, splints, need for rest, etc. — can be a challenge. Lisa will come to the rescue, posting tips on how to plan a vacation when you live with RA.


    Planning for the future means dreaming and hoping for the best. For all of us, but especially those who live with a chronic health condition, it's also a good idea to include planning for the worst as you look into the future. Several of our writers are going to take a look at some of the less pleasant aspects of planning ahead. These are topics that we prefer to ignore, but which are crucial to know.


    In her second post this month, Lisa is going to write about drug safety. She recent had an accidental medicine overdose and has some first-hand knowledge of how to make sure you take your medication safely.


    Another aspect of being safe in bad situations is making sure that your family and doctors are aware of your medical conditions and any medications you take. This month, Leslie is going to write about Medic-Alert and how you can use it to get better medical care or potentially save your life in an emergency medical situation.


    We are very excited to welcome back Brad, who feels well enough to start writing for us again! He's been through some harrowing medical emergencies in the last several months, ending up in the ICU more times in six months than anyone could wish for in several lifetimes. He's come out of this with a newfound awareness of the necessity of making sure your loved ones know your wishes, should serious health emergencies happen. Later this month, Brad will write about how to draw up a will and a living will, ensuring that his legacy will be what he envisions.


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    You may have noticed that I haven't mentioned what topics I'll be writing about in August. That's because I'll be on sabbatical for a month. I plan to take some time to rest and recharge and start writing my second book. In my absence, the team is going to take good care of you, both here on the main RAHealthCentral site, as well as our Facebook page.


    I look forward to reading your stories about living with RA when I come back in September. Enjoy the rest of the summer!

Published On: August 01, 2013