4 posts tagged “self care”

See our members’ online art show!

Posted 11 months ago by

PatientsLikeMe members have a lot in common beyond their experiences with their health conditions. For example: a love of creativity and visual arts.

For the second year in a row, PatientsLikeMe members have contributed to an online community art show, hosted in our Mental Health and Behavior forum but open to all members. With their permission, we’ve highlighted a sampling of our members’ artwork — from drawings, paintings and photographs to jewelry, fabric and graphic arts — in a new Facebook album.

“BLUE CITY – MOROCCO,” OIL ON CANVAS BY MEMBER CRAIG BRAQUET

In total, the 2017 art show and 2018-19 art show drew (no pun intended!) 300+ forum posts and 2,000+ “likes” — data that shows we’re a vibrant and supportive social network for patients. (Psst — join PatientsLikeMe or log in to see all the wonderful entries in these art shows and connect with thousands of others living with 2,700+ health conditions.)

“PatientsLikeMe is a large community but events like this highlight just how connected and comfortable members feel to share their talents with each other,” says Vivien Roman-Hampton, our mental health community moderator and a licensed social worker. “These examples of such amazing art are a reminder that our members are more than their health challenges — they are complex, unique, creative individuals. I’m thrilled to be able to see this all come together.”

Sharing about artwork and creative outlets isn’t entirely “off topic” in a place where people come to discuss their health conditionssymptoms and treatments; some members consider art therapyjournaling and other forms of expression part of their self-care and treatment regimen (click on these links to learn more about how much these practices help).

Artist or not, we hope you’ll join our community — and follow us on Facebook and Instagram — to stay in the loop on all things PatientsLikeMe!


It’s Self-Care Day! 7 “pillars” for taking care of you

Posted July 24th, 2018 by

Today is International Self-Care Day. There’s even a Senate resolution designating July 24 as a day to recognize the importance of self-care in the U.S. (it’s on 7/24 because, ideally, it should be a focus 24/7 for everyone). Has your self-care — from diet and hydration to hygiene and hobbies — been slipping because of competing priorities? Bring it back into focus with these “seven pillars” recommended by health care experts – plus some easy TLC ideas from your fellow member, Laura.

What are the “7 pillars”?

The International Self-Care Foundation has developed what it considers The Seven Pillars of Self-Care:

Pillar 1 – Knowledge and health literacy: Finding health information and ways to understand it so you can make appropriate health decisions

Pillar 2 – Mental well-being, self-awareness and agency: Getting health care screenings; “knowing your numbers” for important stats like body mass index (BMI), cholesterol and blood pressure; and keeping tabs on your mental health

Pillar 3 – Physical activity: Staying as fit as possible (talk with your doctor about a healthy exercise plan that works with your condition)

Pillar 4 – Health eating: Keeping a nutritious, balanced diet

Pillar 5 – Risk avoidance or mitigation: Quitting tobacco, limiting alcohol use, getting vaccinated, practicing safe sex and using sunscreen

Pillar 6 – Good hygiene: Bathing, washing your hands, brushing your teeth, cleaning your produce and taking other food-safety steps

Pillar 7 – Rational and responsible use of care products and services: Knowing the guidelines and possible side effects or dangers of medications and services (prescriptions, over-the-counter meds, alternative or natural health products), and working with a health care professional to plan how to use these things safely

Many of these fit well with the mission and resources of PatientsLikeMe, so remember to keep tracking your conditions, symptoms, treatments and more in your profile.

Laura’s tips for TLC

PatientsLikeMe Team of Advisors member Laura — who’s living with bipolar disorder and PTSD — wrote a piece to share her 5 tips for self-care with the mental health community. She says self-care is “paramount” in living with multiple chronic conditions.

For Laura, “self-care is really about utilizing the five senses in an attempt to make you feel better, or at least to bring you to a more manageable spot until you can talk with a doctor or therapist.” So her self-care practice includes cool things like adult coloring pages, massage, singing/listening to music and more activities that deliver some “zen.”

What questions or advice do you have about self-care? Add a comment below or, better yet, join PatientsLikeMe to swap ideas with the community here in the forum!

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