tips for bad days // Rheumatoid Arthritis

My rheumatoid arthritis isn’t as bad as it could be. I’m able to work a retail job part-time and do yoga on occasion. For the first few months before my diagnosis, though, I could barely walk around, I had trouble getting in the shower, and I dropped a lot of things. On most days the fatigue was hard to handle and getting out of bed was a challenge. All I wanted to do was sleep.

I’m on proper medications now, but I still have my bad days. I am grateful they aren’t as often, but they hit me hard and make it difficult to function throughout the day.

Here are some of the things I do to make those days more bearable.

Rest and relax.

This one is pretty simple, but I try not to stress when I have bad days. I use that day as a mental health day and to try to get my body back to normal (as normal as it can be at least). I’ll take a nap if needed and just watch movies or play video games.

Take a warm shower.

If I have nothing going on that day it’s sometimes hard to get out of bed. Taking that step to shower, especially a warm one, makes all the difference. It helps my body relax and alleviates some of the swelling, if only for a little while.

Only eat plant-based meals and anti-inflammatory foods.

This one is hard. Sometimes you want to treat yourself on bad days, or make dinner easy and order a pizza or takeout. That doesn’t make me feel any better, though. Giant smoothies and homemade sushi bowls and salads make me feel better. I wrote two posts in the past on meals I make on bad days. Check them out:

Top 7 Meals For Bad Days // Easy Vegan Meals

Do something that makes you happy, no matter how small it is.

Sometimes I still have to go into work on my bad days. I make sure when I get home I do at least one thing that makes me happy. For me, it’s something as simple as making a snack or some tea, listening to my favorite albums, watching YouTube videos from my favorite content creators, or taking my makeup off and laying in bed with a bunch of blankets and reading. No matter how small it is, do something that makes you happy.

Talk to people that understand.

I am a huge lurker in the rheumatoid arthritis subreddit on reddit (r/rheumatoid). Some people don’t understand that even if I look young or okay on the outside, my body is constantly fatigued and screaming at me every time I move. For me it has helped a lot to read other people’s thoughts and feelings, which is one of the reasons I started this blog. Especially when I am at work on my lunch break in pain, it helps me to scroll through and read people’s posts.

Those are some of the things I try to do on bad days. Sometimes it’s hard, but I always try my best to not let my diagnosis get me down. Always know I am here to talk if anyone needs someone to listen.

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