Helpful Tools and Devices

5 Gift Ideas for People with Rheumatoid Arthritis

The HealthCentral Editorial Team Nov 29th, 2012 (updated Oct 16th, 2013)
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Audiobooks/MP3 player
Audiobooks/MP3 player

For people with RA, holding a traditional book can become too difficult. Neck, shoulder and even hand and finger pain can prevent your loved one from being able to hold a book. Buying either audio books on CD, or downloading MP3s from an online audiobook store, such as Audible, can bring back the joy of books.

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Handknit socks
Handknit socks

One trick to manage your pain is to keep warm and there's nothing better for your feet than a pair of handknit socks. If you don't know anyone who knits, the handmade goodies can be found at local craft fairs and even machine-made socks can be delightful for your feet, as long as they feel luxurious and soft.

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Shiatsu massage
Shiatsu massage

Although there's no such thing as a bad massage, some find shiatsu to be more helpful.Based in the same principles in Chinese medicine as acupuncture, shiatsu is performed on meridians in your body, unblocking them and allowing your Ch'i (life force) to flow freely. Specifics aside and more importantly, it makes you feel better for days.

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Dragon Naturally Speaking
Dragon Naturally Speaking

For people with RA, typing on the computer and writing by hand can become too painful. One way to lift that pain is to get your loved one voice recognition software for their computer, that allows them to dictate rather than type. Dragon is a specific brand that has an accuracy rate of 99 percent and can acheive well over 100 words per minute.

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A personal letter
A personal letter

Cheapest, yet most dear of all, is taking the time to write a letter to a loved one, thoughtfully describing how much they mean to you. Some people won't "get it", instead wondering where their stereo went, but for most, it's the kind of gift that can make you cry (in the good way) and treasure it for a lifetime.