Millions of people throughout the United States suffer from arthritis each year. If you are the family elder care provider for one of these people it is your responsibility to make sure that they can live the healthiest, happiest, safest, and most comfortable lifestyle possible even while managing their condition. In order to do this, you must understand the condition and what it takes to cope with, treat, manage, and even overcome it. There are many very prevalent myths regarding arthritis that can make it more challenging for a caregiver to help their parent live with the disease. Getting over these myths helps you to ensure that you can be the highest quality, most nurturing, and most effective elder car provider possible throughout your loved one’s aging years.
Some of the most common myths about arthritis include:
It is just one thing. Because the term “arthritis” is often used without any other modifier, many people think that this is just one disease and that every person who says that they have arthritis is dealing with the same condition. The reality is that “arthritis” is actually a blanket term that encompasses more than 100 conditions. This makes it essential that you know exactly what type of arthritis your parent faces so that you can ensure you support them in finding and following the right course of treatment and management for them.
There is nothing you can do about it.There is often an unfortunate “all or nothing” attitude about arthritis that says that once your parent gets it, there is nothing that they can do about it. It is as if they have to simply deal with the pain and stiffness. This can discourage a senior and lead to them having no motivation to follow through with treatments and management approaches. Fortunately this is completely untrue. While there is no cure for arthritis, there are many ways that your parent can reduce the pain, stiffness, and other symptoms of the disease. Talk to their doctor to find out what options are available to them, and then help them select the one that is right for their personal and care goals.
It means you cannot move around. Many people feel that if they have arthritis they should not exercise because it could cause more damage to the joint. The reality is that exercise is actually one of the most effective forms of management that is available for arthritis. Staying active helps to strengthen and support the joints as well as keep the bodyweight under control so that there is not excess stress on the joints, causing more pain and discomfort.
The help of an elder care provider can be incredibly valuable when your parent is coping with arthritis. This elderly home care services provider can be there for your loved one to offer the emotional support and encouragement that is often essential for a senior to stay motivated while dealing with the disease. They can also support your parent while they work toward achieving and maintaining higher activity levels to control their pain, improve the health of their joints, and protect their overall health and wellbeing for the future.