How to manage your pain at home

04 January 2021
Collette stretching at home.
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Updated: 4 January 2021

People experience pain in different ways and have good and bad days. Here’s our roundup of advice and resources to help you:

Drugs and pain relief

The current advice is that you shouldn't stop taking your medication unless advised to do so by your GP, rheumatologist or rheumatology nurse.

If you're on immunosuppressants, and you stop your medication, you're more likely to have a flare, which could make you more likely to pick up an infection. If you have concerns about your medication, speak to a member of your healthcare team.

Learn about other types of pain relief, such as paracetamol, using electronic pain relief (TENS), heat pads or ice packs.

Speak with your rheumatology team

Depending on your local rheumatology team some appointments may be via telephone / online and some rheumatology departments have advice lines.

Contact your doctor or rheumatology team to find out more about the support they're offering. Also, ask if there’s anything else that they can provide advice on (from medication to exercise) to help you manage your pain and condition. 

Talk to each other

We know adjusting to change can be tough, both physically and emotionally. Open communication, feeling listened to and being honest is key.

“As much as your body is screaming lie down, take control and keep moving. In these worrying times ensure you walk; it can lift your mood and hopefully improve your mental health. Talk to family and strangers from a distance or by phone and keep busy.” 

John

Find out how our online community helped to give Anna the support she needed after she was diagnosed with osteoarthritis.

Read how Ken controls his pain through mindfulness and a combination of other methods.

Stay connected with family and friends whether that’s over the phone, a socially distanced walk or face to face using Skype, FaceTime or WhatsApp.

Boosting wellbeing

If you can’t move much, getting outside, if you have a garden, can help. The feel-good factor of keeping active at a level that works for you can help reduce emotional stress too.

You've got this, no matter what this is in your world, you've got this. Turn on your favourite tune, whether it be at home, in the car if you have to work, or whilst at work, take 3 1/2 minutes to sing along to your favourite song; then take a deep breath and know you've got this ❤️

Ali

“I’m a list person but lists aren’t always good, if you don’t achieve what’s on them. Give yourself a reminder to be realistic with yourself, allow for things going a bit pear-shaped, shelve whatever you can. Don’t feel you have to give up on it, it’s just that right now isn’t the time, so put it on a shelf and when the time is right lift it down.”

Yvonne

Read more about ways to look after your wellbeing

Exercise

Exercise can help reduce joint stiffness, improve your mood and make you feel better in yourself. If you have questions about whether you should exercise or if it could impact your condition, read ask the expert - I have arthritis, should I exercise? Check out our strengthening and stretching tips and simple exercises to help ease pain.

For more inspiration on ways to get moving at home go to the We are Undefeatable website. They have five in five a configurable mini work out tool and lots more ideas ranging from chair exercises, yoga to dancing in your kitchen.

To help you manage your pain, medical experts have come together to produce these self-management resources to give you robust advice and exercises to help support you at home. 

Let's Move 

Let’s Move is our online programme for people who want more movement in their lives.  Sign up today, and we’ll be there to support you every step of the way. 

Relaxation

Many people find that learning relaxation techniques can help in managing pain, reducing stress and improve sleep.

You can try different techniques from guided meditation to breathing techniques and see what works best for you. Laughing, dancing and singing can all help make you feel good.

"Move within your physical constraints, maintain muscle strength and range of movement. Try relaxation and mindfulness. Smiling and laughing are great mood boosters. This too will pass."

Jan

For inspiration why not try out a mindfulness meditation app like Headspace or Calm.

Find out why yoga and tai chi are beneficial for our bodies and minds.

If you are feeling anxious

Here’s some useful resources to help support you, if you are feeling worried:

Your questions answered

Find out the most up-to-date answers to your questions read COVID-19 vaccines and arthritis

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