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Self care for long-term conditions

Self care for long-term conditions

Did you know that if you are living with a long-term condition, you will spend, on average, six hours a year with a healthcare professional and the remaining 8,754 hours managing your health for yourself?

Living with a long-term condition brings challenges and it’s important to have the confidence, support and information to manage your health. Self care can help you make the most of living with your condition, rather than avoiding or missing out on things because of it. Self care puts you in control.

Research shows that people with long-term conditions who take more control of their health feel more able to cope with their health problem, have better pain management, fewer flare ups and more energy.

 

Tips for living with a long-term condition

NHS Choices has created some practical tips on living with a long-term condition. To download a leaflet that explains these in more detail, click here:

Accept you have a persistent health condition...and then begin to move on

Get involved – building a support team

Pacing – pacing your daily activities

Learn to prioritise and plan your days

Setting goals/action plans

Being patient with yourself

Learn relaxation skills

Exercise

Keep a diary and track your progress

Have a plan for set-backs

Team work – work with your practice team

Keeping it up

 

Find out more about self care for long-term conditions

There are a range of free courses aimed at helping people who are living with a long-term condition to manage their condition better on a daily basis:

The Expert Patients Programme – click here for information

DAFNE (Dose Adjustment for Normal Eating) and DESMOND (Diabetes Education and Self Management for Ongoing and Newly Diagnosed) for people with diabetes

Breathe Easy for people with asthma – click here for information

These courses usually run over several sessions and will provide advice and tools to put you in control of your condition. Ask your GP or the receptionist for details of courses in this area or visit NHS Choices. Click here for more information.

The following websites provide good information that can help you understand more about the common condition or long-term health problem that affects you:

NHS Choices

Patient UK

Map of Medicine on NHS Choices



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