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Living With Psoriatic Arthritis

While it might seem overwhelming at first, it is possible to have a somewhat normal life when you are diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis.  If you are new to exercise, it will probably be very challenging in the beginning, but it can be done!  It's important to start low, go're not training for a marathon when you first start out!

Gentle forms of exercise, such as walking or swimming are great exercises for beginners. It might be necessary to get some help from a physical therapist or a personal trainer to get yourself going! Cycling, yoga and tai chi are other possible activities.  Do not hesitate to talk to your health care team if you are unsure about an activity; it's better to be safe than sorry.

Pain is an unfortunate consequence of psoriatic arthritis.  Medications are necessary to combat pain and also the inflammation caused by this condition.  Most likely prescription NSAIDs or biologics such as Humira® will be a component of your treatment.  Some patients benefit from massage or acupuncture treatments. There are also exercises that can help with flexibility and range of motion that may be prescribed to you by someone on your health care team.

If you are employed, it may be necessary to modify your workspace or work activities if you have psoriatic arthritis.  The right desk, the right chair height, and the right computer accessories can have a big impact on your productivity. This is a win-win for employers and employees alike!

Whatever you do, try to stay positive!  A good support system, including family, friends, and/or a support group can help you to cope with life's challenges. And you in turn, can be a beacon of hope for another who is going through the same issue.

Sources: National Psoriasis Foundation; Wikimedia


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