Coping with a chronic illness can be extremely difficult and that is why it is important for patients to learn strategies to cope with their condition. Chronic illness can be defined as any illness that stays for a longer period of time and requires medical intervention, including medication and/or surgery.
Sometimes, the illness can stay with person for the rest of his life. That is why it is important to have a positive outlook when suffering from a chronic illness.
Positive living with chronic illness, however, can be difficult because with the illness comes many other side effects and the main ones are pain and fatigue. In addition, the illness can cause changes in the person's appearance leading to low self-image. All these factors may lead the person to withdraw into the shell and shun social interaction. The illness itself can be stressful and can influence the person's life negatively leading to feelings of anger, frustration and depression.
That is why positive living with chronic illness is important. It allows the person to cope with his condition without sinking into depression. One of the best coping strategies that allows the person to think positively about his condition and life is attribution of meaning to the illness. This allows the person to change his perspective and look at his life differently. He realigns his goals and values and believes that everything happens for the best. This can help the person manage his stress and maintain a positive outlook on life.
Similarly, there are other strategies that help the patient get a positive outlook and they all have one thing is common -- they help the patient regain some sense of control over his life and this, in turn, helps the person to improve his quality of life.
A mental healthcare provider can assist you in designing strategies that help you in positive living with chronic illness; and for the days when depression overtakes you, the healthcare provider can prescribe medication that help you cope with your mood. In addition, you should think about joining a support group so that you can share your experiences with people suffering from the same illness. This will teach you news ways of dealing with your condition. Or else you can opt for individual counseling where you can vent out your private feelings about your illness without any embarrassment. Some people derive more benefit from one-to-one counseling rather than group settings.
However, in order for positive living with chronic illness to work, you need to cherish moments where good things happen to you despite your illness. And once you start noticing the positive things in life, you will automatically learn to focus on living rather than wallowing in self-pity.
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