All posts related to "arthritis"

Be our guest, please take a seat to relief your arthritis pain

Periods of rest with physical activities are important for people living with arthritis and for those who have had a recent joint injury or surgery. For Cheryl Koehn of Arthritis Consumer Experts, she loves to see occasional benches or tree stumps that she can sit down and rest for a minute before carrying on, especially if she is on a long walk with Molly, her labradoodle puppy.

Our dear friend Céline from Céline Interiors Inc. notes her opinion about public benches in her blog C note:

“Historically designed as seats for everyday folk, bench designs today are far from common. As an antidote to urban isolation communal seating has gained in popularity. Designers have embraced the revival with stunning designs that re-think the humble bench.”

C-note blog

We have included an excerpt of Céline’s C note blog below. Feel free to share pictures of unique looking benches in your area. What would you do to make a bench arthritis-friendly?

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Rheumatologists should ask “How’s your sex life?”

Couple close togetherOne of the main goals of the PRECISION project, showcased in July’s issue of JointHealth™ monthly, is to enable clients to lead a healthy life in the context of their chronic disease. Besides medical adherence, rheumatologists should also express concern about their patient’s sex life and ask, “How’s your sex life?”

In an interview with The Rheumatologist, Alex Shteynshlyuger, MD, a New York urologist, said that more than half of all rheumatoid arthritis patients have difficulties with sex and yet the topic gets little attention from rheumatologists.

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Last week to apply for the “Canada’s Best Workplaces for Employees Living with Arthritis” awards!

Last week to apply for the “Canada’s Best Workplaces for Employees Living with Arthritis” awards! 

Canada Best Workplaces SlideWould your company qualify as a “best workplace for employees living with arthritis”? Arthritis Consumer Experts is looking to award three Canadian companies that provide a workplace and environment considerate of employees living with arthritis.

The Canada’s Best Workplaces for Employees Living with Arthritis Award is a coast-to-coast search to find and recognize three small, medium and large companies who offer exceptional workplaces for their employees living with arthritis. 

Download and complete an Application Form now. Both employer and employee can apply on behalf of their company. The application deadline is 11:59pm on August 15, 2014.

For more information, please visit , email or call 604-974-1366.

Arthritis Alliance of Canada Newsletter – July 2014

We would like to share with you the July 2014 edition of the Arthritis Alliance of Canada Newsletter. Here you will find exciting events and updates from members of the Arthritis Alliance of Canada. Below is an excerpt from the newsletter:

Arthritis Alliance logoThe Arthritis Alliance of Canada

The Friday, October 31st Research Symposia Program, entitled “Arthritis Unmasked: Genetics, Treatments and Partnerships” was composed in partnership with the Gairdner Foundation and CIHR Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis.

The Research Symposia Day will feature the recipients of the 2014 Canada Gairdner International Award, Drs. Ravinder N. Maini and Marc Feldmann, “For the discovery of anti-TNF therapy for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory diseases.”

The program will also open up the floor to the North-America’s most prominent researchers in the area of rheumatology, genomics, human and medical genetics. Among the speakers of the Research Symposia are Drs. Peter Gregersen, Dan Kastner, Sherine Gabriel, Lawrence Steinman, Laurie Glimcher, Aled Edwards, Alan Aderem, Claire Bombardier and Hani El-Gabalawy.

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How to support a loved one who is living with chronic pain

Couple The Canadian Institute for the Relief of Pain and Disability is hosting a free webinar on Thursday, August 14, 2014 at 11:00am PDT or 2:00pm EDT titled “How to Support a Loved One Who is Living with Chronic Pain”. The webinar is co-sponsored by Pain BC and The Canadian Pain Coalition. Register for the webinar now.

In the webinar, you will learn:

  1. Strategies for supporting a loved one who has chronic pain.
  2. Things to avoid when attempting to support your loved one.
  3. The ways in which chronic pain can impact family members, for better or worse.

Dr. Susan Holtzman, Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of British Columbia (Okanagan campus) and registered psychologist, will draw from her experience and training and share the most effective strategies for supporting the people you love, as well as some of the patterns of support that can be damaging to your relationship and health.

Dr. Holtzman is especially interested in how social relationships can help or hinder people’s efforts to cope with their illness, and how chronic illness can impact the family. Her research has been supported by grants from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and the National Institutes of Health.

AS it Goes – A Magical Fish

Armand the betta fish

Armand, the betta fish. Photo courtesy of Fran Halter.

My hubbie and I recently celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary, and our children searched for the perfect gift to give the couple that already has two of everything. They finally settled on a “little” something related to the traditional stone—coral—that marks 35 years of married life.

Coral is said to grant wisdom, promote a healthy emotional foundation, and protect passage through tempests. However, instead of giving us a piece of ornamental coral (where to display that?) or a decorative photo of colourful coral (no wall space available either), they decided to expand on the coral theme and integrate it into their gift.

Apparently a family vacay to see a coral reef was their first idea, but practicality and financial reality intervened. Instead, we were introduced to “Armand”, a bright blue betta fish whose new home features coloured coral-type rocks on the bottom of his fish bowl. These fish tend to be aggressive, so they are often sold individually as they can easily live up to their common name: Siamese Fighting Fish. Two male bettas in the same tank will fight each other to death to exert their dominance (I’m sure the kids did not know about this aspect when they decided on their gift ).

However, Armand seems friendly enough and he interacts with us: he follows your finger along the outside of his tank and every day at the feeding hour, he nearly jumps out of the water with excitement when his food arrives. Lately, he’s been making bubble nests, floating bundles of bubbles, which apparently indicates that he is healthy and comfortable in his environment on the island in our kitchen.

We were a little hesitant about owning a fish because our previous attempts to care for goldfish were most unsuccessful. But there’s no doubt that owning a pet has a positive psychological effect. Armand’s lazy swim around his bowl does impart a certain calmness with his hypnotic movements. It’s a fact that your body goes through a physical change when your mood is altered; the level of cortisol, a hormone associated with stress, is actually lowered. And the production of serotonin, a chemical associated with well-being, is increased.

Fran HalterCoupled with the purported “magical” properties imparted by the coral stones on the bottom of his bowl, Armand has made a positive contribution to our state of health. Anyone who suffers from a chronic condition or disease, such as ankylosing spondylitis (AS), welcomes any small positive measure that brings even a modicum of comfort or relief. Seems like Armand has done just that. ~ Fran


Do you have a pet that has a magical effect on your health? Send us pictures!