5 Steps Toward Scleroderma Survival
By Brandi Goodman
June is Scleroderma Awareness Month. Take this time to learn about this chronic illness and how it can impact your life. Most people believe the disease only affects your skin, making it rough in texture and appearance. This autoimmune disease can actually impact the digestive system, lungs, kidneys, and joints. It can be fatal, but it is also survivable if you take the necessary steps.
Change Your Diet
This isn't as simple as just eating fruits and vegetables like most health advice suggests when fighting ailments. Scleroderma can wreak havoc on the digestive system and make it difficult to consume food at all. You may experience acid reflux or heartburn regularly. It can also be tough to swallow. Soft food that isn't spicy, greasy, or full of caffeine may be best. This may mean drinking smoothies or choosing meal replacement shakes instead of eating full meals.
It is important to exercise however possible so you can keep your blood pressure in check and your lungs healthy. Scleroderma can cause lung damage, making it difficult to breathe. You may find it difficult to exercise much at all after this happens. Preventing such severe damage with exercise now is key.
Enhance Your Sleep Schedule
Getting enough rest each night can also help you manage your symptoms. Mental health in particular can be helped by getting adequate sleep. You should enhance your sleep schedule by turning off all lights at least an hour or more before bed, closing the curtains, turning off noise, and following the same nightly routine. Brain fog is a common side effect of medications used to treat scleroderma. Resting the mind will help to prevent this.
See a Chiropractor
A chiropractor cannot help all problems associated with scleroderma, but it may help in one area. The disease can cause musculoskeletal problems, such as stiffness and swelling of the joints. Seeing a chiropractor regularly may help to keep the joints flexible and reduce the pain felt. It may keep the body from becoming completely immobile.
Find a Support Group
Surviving isn't just about preventing the disease from becoming fatal. It's also about learning to live with this disease each day and making sure it doesn't take complete hold over all aspects of your life. You can join a support group that offers guidance through this difficult journey. You can enhance your quality of life and your mental health by joining a group of this nature.
Scleroderma is a very complex disease. Learning how to survive it and still lead a meaningful life is possible. Try these five steps as well as other methods for maintaining your well-being and keeping symptoms minimal.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Peachtree City, Ga.