Saturday, December 4, 2010

A Few Of My Favorite (Illness) Things…*

In my everyday life, here are a few “everyday” things that I can’t live without:

- Cloth bags – You know, the ones you can buy just about anywhere these days. I’m accumulating quite a collection of them. But they are great because I feel they balance weight better than traditional plastic or paper bags, I can shoulder them, rather than hold them in my arthritic hands, and as a bonus, they are good for the environment.

- Cell phone with keyboard – I don’t love to text, but since it happens, I got a cell phone that has a pull out full keyboard. It’s too hard on my fingers to try and text using numbers only.

- Rubber jar grips – What a simple thing, but absolutely necessary. I pretty much can’t open any jar without assistance due to my arthritis, so these are a must for me.

- Pill holder – I have several of these, ranging from single dose holders to the weekly calendar type with several compartments for each day. It’s too hard to keep track of all the meds I take any other way.

- Biofreeze® or Freeze-It® - Numbing jells, which can help my achy joints. I prefer the roll-on type, but there are several varieties.

- Ibuprofen – Enough said.

Since my second hospitalization several weeks ago, I’ve been trying to come up with a list of the things that I would want to keep in a pre-packed bag that I could easily grab and take with me for a hospital stay (of unknown duration):

- Slippers and/or socks

- A stockpile of meds

- Underwear

- Feminine hygiene products – because the hospital’s are of inferior quality

- Toothpaste and toothbrush

- Pajama set – Because I’m super sick of getting giant gowns that threaten to expose parts of myself that I don’t want exposed

- Reading material

- My special binder that has all of my important medical information in it

I always thought that I would be one of those people in the hospital, with my laptop and cell phone, always connected. But I’m not. I can’t seem to do much else other than lay there…

As you can see from both of these lists, it’s about the simple things in life. Aside from the cell phone, most of these things cost under $10, but they are worth their weight in gold. For me, organization and pain maintenance are key to my existence.

* All of the items mentioned here are my opinion and should not stand in for the advice of a medical professional. Additionally, these are products that I use of my own accord. I have not received compensation and/or kick backs for any of the products mentioned in this post.


  1. I had a similar idea last weekend as I lay in a bed in the ER: to create an emergency kit to take to emergency with me. Simple things that I don't often carry around with me: a list of all my meds; a small bottle of water (or a glass); crackers; hand lotion; hair brush and elastics.
    When the situation arises, I'm not thinking clearly enough to grab what I'm going to need.

  2. I love those cloth bags. They really are more convenient for the sickies in us.

    Packing a bag is a really good idea. I've been thinking of packing one and leaving it in my car too.

  3. I need to find some rubber jar grips. My hands have been in bad shape as of late.

    These are some great tips. Thanks!

  4. Phylor - I have an index card with all of my medication information that I keep in my wallet at all times, and a note in my phone alerting people that it is there. I forgot a hairbrush - great idea!

    I also forgot to mention that I would be in bad shape without non-child proof caps on my medication. These make life so much easier.

    And I'd love to hear suggestions from others of things that I haven't mentioned here.