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Health Issues

Taking Your Life Back After a Health Diagnosis

At some point in our lives most of us will encounter a health issue of some kind.  It could be the result of an accident, overuse of our bodies, an injury, disease, or even stress. However, a majority of the time we recover, or at least learn to live with the after effects.

At other times though, our health issue can become chronic or long-term. We may develop chronic pain or experience disease. These changes in health can come on suddenly without warning and throw our lives into upheaval. This is especially true if we can no longer do the things we used to and we feel that we are no longer the person we once were.

Adjusting to a New Identity

There can be added stress if family members expect us to function just as we did prior to the change in our health.  Not to mention the possibility of overwhelming fear if faced with questions about disability or even one’s own mortality.

There are many programs that look at managing health issues short-term, but offer little to no ongoing, long-term support. Looking online or talking to those around us to find answers can result in conflicting information that only adds to one’s stress and confusion.  It can be difficult to know which way to turn.

The Impact of of a Chronic Illness

Emotional Issues vary but can include:

You are not alone. There is hope. Your health condition does not need to run your life. Accepting and coming to terms with what you are facing is a process. A professional counsellor can help you on the journey to rediscover who you are and what is important in your life.

The last of human freedoms - the ability to choose one's attitude in a given set of circumstances.

Viktor E. Frankl

10 Steps to Living With a Chronic Illness

  1. Accept that your life will be different in some aspects.
  2. You may have to evaluate your commitments and learn to pace yourself.
  3. Find easier ways to accomplish tasks - modify how you do things.
  4. Surround yourself with supportive people.
  5. Explain to those around you that you have to do things differently.
  6. Realize that not everyone will understand the impact on your life.
  7. Ask for help.
  8. Find a support group.
  9. Research health information using legitimate sources.
  10. Be gentle with yourself.

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