Today is the 5th annual Bell Let’s Talk Day, with Clara Hughes leading the campaign inviting all Canadians to talk, text and tweet and share on Facebook about mental health and help build a Canada free of the stigma of mental illness.
In a press release yesterday, Clara, Canada’s 6-time Olympic medalist and national Bell Let’s Talk ambassador since the launch of the initiative in 2010, said: “I’m really looking forward to kicking off the national conversation about mental health with Bell Let’s Talk Day 2015! Join us in the fight against the stigma that makes most who struggle with mental illness reluctant to ask for help.”
Mental illness is associated with other diseases, one of which is a type of arthritis called fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is characterized primarily by chronic widespread pain (CWP) in the muscles, ligaments and tendons, and a heightened sensitivity to touch resulting in pain that can last for months.
JointHealth™ monthly – January 2015
New Year, New You!
In our first JointHealth™ monthly of 2015, we are focusing on initiatives that help Canadian women better manage their health and improve their quality of life. We also look at activities as part of the third year of Arthritis Consumer Experts and Arthritis Research Canada’s partnership with Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix. A partnership that has focused on women: mind, body, spirit.
Some of the stories in this month’s newsletter include:
- How pharmacists at Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix locations can help with managing your arthritis.
- Resolutions for women living with arthritis.
- How weather plays a role in your arthritis.
- How to stay active in 2015.
Arthritis Consumer Experts
Or maybe tuck them away in your closet once in a while. Last year, at Arthritis Research Canada’s Reaching Out with Arthritis Research (ROAR) event, there was a section commenting on “changing shoes”, arthritis and self-identity. One lady in that research said:
“I started wearing flat shoes. So flat shoes meant pants and never wearing dresses and I was dressing differently and my life became different and after a couple of years, it just, you know, it [RA] wasn’t getting any better…I came to realization that this was it, I was giving up skiing, tennis, that part of my life’s gone.”
This is a demonstration of a causal relationship between arthritis and wearing high heels – I have arthritis; therefore, I am unable to wear high heels when my joints are inflamed or in pain. For those with a wandering mind, you may ask yourself: Can I get arthritis from wearing high heels? If yes, what can I do to add glamour to an outfit and boost my confidence without wearing high heels?
A 20-year Australian study reports that women with osteoarthritis (OA) have an increased risk of fragility fracture, even if their bone mineral density (BMD) is normal and their body mass index (BMI) is high.
The study looked at data from 2,412 women and 1,452 men aged older than 45 (average 69). Researchers discovered that 29% of women and 26% of men had a diagnosis of osteoarthritis. According to lead researcher Professor Tuan Nguyen of the Genetic Epidemiology of Osteoporosis Lab at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, the risk is fairly substantial and women with OA have a 50% increase in the risk of fracture.
Rarely, if ever, have the movies depicted rheumatoid arthritis, but last Friday, the movie “Words and Pictures”, starring Academy Award-winning actress Juliette Binoche, did just that.
Words and Pictures tells the story of an artist – Dina Delsanto, Ms. Binoche’s character – who, challenged by advancing rheumatoid arthritis (RA), had to change the way she painted and deal with the emotional challenges brought on by the disease. This is perhaps the first time a feature film has focused attention on rheumatoid arthritis – an autoimmune disease with hallmark symptoms of inflammation and resulting pain.
Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE) Founder, Cheryl Koehn, was thrilled to be called on to assist Ms. Binoche in her preparation for the role, and honoured to be asked to review the script and provide comment to ensure the emotional characterization of RA was as accurate as film would allow. Kudos go to ACE physiotherapy advisor, Dr. Linda Li, who assisted Ms. Binoche with the physical portrayal of her character, and Mr. Otto Kamensek, an arthritis community leader and artist himself, who shared his artistic process and art.
Congratulations to everyone involved in the making of Words and Pictures and the awareness it will raise for RA.
Like the flowers in this album, all the mothers out there are different and unique in their own sense. We wish all the mothers out there a joyous and happy mother’s day! Thank you for your endless love and inspiration, moms!