It is seldomly addressed. No amount of procedures and pills can work as magically as self-care or what we call personal chronic care management. Yet, it is rarely discussed during hospital appointments.
It is about enhancing the patient’s emotional, physical, and spiritual wellbeing. This is something that cannot be achieved by frequent hospitalization. Active patient participation is a must in making specific lifestyle changes that influence these three aspects.
Before we disclose our tips, let’s understand the current scenario of our healthcare system in terms of personal chronic care management.
What Do Statistics Tell?
Last year, the Harris Poll and Samueli Integrative Health Programs conducted a survey of 304 licensed physicians and 1000 adult patients across the United States. The survey revealed a significant communication gap that exists between patients and doctors when it comes to self-care.
For instance, a staggering 75% of patients reported that personal chronic care management was never brought up in any interaction with their physicians. On the other hand, about 46% of the physicians concluded that it is not something that patients would want to talk about.
Ironically, almost 72% of the patients in the survey expressed their interest in discussing self-care!
Busting Some Myths
Many misconceptions regarding personal chronic care management are floating around these days. Most people consider it an expensive endeavor and thus feel discouraged. However, it doesn’t have to be associated with buying costly items.
For instance, you don’t have to go on a shopping spree and buy luxury skin-care products to make yourself feel good. This approach is temporary since the effects won’t last long. You should instead find ways to focus on your mind, spirit, and body.
Curious to know how you can do that?
Have a look:
Don’t Beat Yourself Up!
The first step is to set realistic goals for yourself. Setting ridiculous expectations puts additional pressure on you, which is not healthy, of course. Learn to celebrate small victories.
Ran errands today? It’s a victory!
Did laundry today? Celebrate that!
Have you decluttered your home today? Cherish it!
Remember that you are a winner. Don’t be disheartened by small setbacks. So, what if you couldn’t clean up the mess today? You have to find something – anything that you can accomplish each day and emerge victorious towards the end of it!
Maintain Your Body Weight
We advise you to start small. As a chronic illness patient, your body undergoes a lot of pain already. You shouldn’t have to do hardcore plyometrics to maintain your body weight. Begin your weight loss journey with a 10-minute walk every day!
You can eventually do light cardio. However, there will be days when your condition may overpower your self-determination. During those times, remember that there’s no shame in giving yourself a break.
And when you do feel better – bounce back like a champion!
Consult a Dietician
Taking your health condition into account, it’s probably best to consult a dietician who will develop a meal plan that suits your nutrition requirements. Professional help is necessary to understand what you should and shouldn’t be eating.
For instance, if you are someone living with chronic kidney disease, your diet should include limited protein, low-potassium foods, and appropriate fruits and vegetables.
Get Adequate Sleep
Remember the survey we talked about? It suggests that a whopping 92% of physicians and 73% of patients stressed on adequate sleep for personal chronic care management.
Unfortunately, during office visits, only 40% of physicians talk about healthy sleep habits. We recommend that you must get at least 7-8 hours of sleep every single night!
Without question, enough sleep will keep your sickness and stress at bay!
Our brain tends to live in a loop of negative thoughts constantly. It is possible to escape this psychological rumination by practicing mindfulness.
Start meditating – even if it’s only for five minutes a day in the beginning. You can gradually increase that to 15 minutes every day.
Ask for Help
It’s pretty amazing to be strong-willed and independent. This shouldn’t, however, stop you from seeking help when you do need it!
Don’t hesitate to ask for help – be it your friends or family. If you don’t have a caregiver, find specialists or doctors who you can trust. We at AdvantagePlusNurses are here for you 24/7.
Our empathetic, experienced team will establish trust with you through regular counseling, guidance, and care. Hence, feel free to access our chronic care management services – visit here.
The number of patients living with long-term illnesses is expected to multiply in the near future. One of the most powerful ways to tackle this epidemic of sorts is to encourage patients to practice self-care!
Bridging the severe communication gap between patients and doctors by addressing personal chronic care management is the most viable solution.