Recently I watched a video about self-care for chronic illness sufferers. It had some great tips, but to be honest most of the suggestions were not things that I, personally, could manage.
Chronic illness comes in many forms. For me, I find myself either in bed or (thanks to my awesome stairlift) downstairs on the couch each day. It’s been like that for the past six years, so as you can imagine we have found a few ways to make life easier. I thought I’d share some of these wee tips today. There’s a mixture in here, but perhaps you’ll find something that you hadn’t thought of. Likewise, I’d love to hear any tips you might have.
Starting with personal care. Here are a few products that I like to keep close to hand.
- An electric toothbrush really helps to minimise the energy needed for teeth brushing.
- Dry shampoo – this stuff is amazing! When your hair is greasy, but there’s no way you can manage to wash it, dry shampoo is the answer! It leaves your hair looking cleaner and feeling fresher. I love the scent of this one too.
- Anti-bacterial gel – I have a few of these on the go. I always keep one to hand. A quick way to clean your hands without having to get out of bed.
- Baby wipes (not pictured) – these are so good for a freshen up.
- Feminine hygiene wipes – speak for themselves really!
- Lip balm – the last thing you need is chapped lips on top of everything else.
- Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask – rehydrates your skin with absolute minimal effort.
- A heat pad – if you find that heat helps to ease your pain, then I definitely recommend one of these. It’s like a mini electric blanket.
- Kinesiotape – I used to wear wrist splints a lot, but in restricting the movement so much they can actually make things worse. So these days I use kinesiotape and it’s fantastic. It gives you support while still allowing freedom of movement. This was suggested to me by a medical professional, who showed us how to use it, but I’m sure you can find a video online teaching you the basics. Tip – be careful when peeling it off… don’t rip it off quick like a plaster as it will take away some skin! Delightful!
- Nakd bars – I keep a supply of these to hand. A quick, healthy snack. My favourites are the Cashew Cookie, Gingerbread and Cocoa Orange.
- Travel mug flask – this isn’t going to be suitable for everyone as it’s fairly large and heavy. It’s not something I can use much these days. However, if you can manage it, it’s great for keeping your coffee warm and minimising the risk of spillage.
- Water bottle (not pictured) – we’ve got to stay hydrated so a water bottle is a great solution. You can keep it in bed with you and it won’t spill. Choose a size that you can manage, with a lid you can operate, and consider using a straw.
- Coffee / hot drinks machine – an easy, minimal effort way to make a hot drink. Get someone else to keep the water level topped up for you. As long as you can lift the mug, then you’re good!
- A bedside touchlamp – so easy to use, no struggling with switches and it can be dimmed to suit your eyes.
- An ereader or Kindle is a great addition to your life if you can manage to read. Prop it up against a pillow and you just have to click a button to turn the page!
- Book pillow – if you prefer a physical book then getting set up with a book pillow makes life easier. I struggle to hold even a small paperback so this set-up is great.
- A smartphone – a great way to keep in touch with friends and family. I also love it for Twitter, it really helps me to feel less isolated and alone.
- Audible – if you can’t read, but you love stories then I recommend audio books. Audible have daily deals going so you don’t have to sign up for a subscription, you can just purchase books that take your fancy. See my Audible Daily Deals post for more details.
Two final suggestions…
- A window bird feeder is such a great way to feel connected with the outdoors when you’re stuck in bed.
- Strategic seating – our house is full of seats so that there’s always one close by. My favourite though is the armchair in the kitchen. It means that I can curl up in there while hubby is cooking.
I think that’s all my suggestions for today! I tried to stick to items that are worth the price you pay for them. I hope you’ve found this post useful.
Do you have any tips to add to the list?
I’d really love to hear any suggestions from you guys. We are always on the lookout for ways to make life easier, more manageable and more enjoyable.