Lupus is a chronic disease that defies easy description.
A diagnosis may not be made for a long time, as it can be a difficult disease to diagnose. Diagnostic difficulties coupled with the serious, chronic nature of the disease present the person with Lupus, the family and medical team with many challenges.
For people with Lupus, psychological issues can be a major part of living with the illness. Health professionals need to be aware of the psychological ramifications of a condition such as Lupus. Because Lupus is a chronic disease of flares and remissions, each exacerbation of the disease can raise new issues for people with Lupus.
To meet the emotional challenges of living with Lupus:
- Get enough sleep.
- Plan for additional rest periods throughout the day, as needed.
- A well-designed exercise program is important to maintaining strength, endurance, and overall fitness. Getting enough rest does not mean cutting out all activity. Every week, make a simple plan of your work and activities. The plan can help you organize the events of your life and ensure that you have a good balance of rest and activity. Each day, review your plan and decide if you are physically up to the activities for that day.
- Be flexible; if you don’t have the strength to do an activity today, do it another time.
- Don’t try to complete a large task or project all at one time; divide it into several steps. Eat a well-balanced diet.
- Dealing with stressful issues and problems takes a lot of energy. If you feel stressed, talk to your doctor or nurse. They may be able to provide you with help for your problem or direct you to someone who can.
To receive a pamphlet on living well with Lupus and other psychological aspects, call Lupus Colorado at 303-597-4050 or toll-free 1-800-858-1292.