This post is part of a paid sponsorship by Regeneron and Sanofi. All opinions are my own.
Many years ago I was diagnosed with “Rheumatoid like Arthritis”. To be diagnosed with RA there has to be RA factor in your blood stream. I had all the other symptoms but didn’t have that factor in my blood yet. My doctor said he couldn’t officially diagnose me until my symptoms got worse. I’ve taken all kinds of different medications for the arthritic pain. Something will work for a while and then will just stop working and I’ll have to try something else. I was also very fortunate to be in remission for a while. My pain was very minimal for a while, but these past few months it’s been very difficult.
It’s really hard to live with the kind of pain that no one can see, which is one of the reasons that I’m working with Regeneron and Sanofi. I want to help raise awareness for RA and it’s been great for me too. I’ve learned more about how others are affected by RA and that I’m not alone. They did a survey where they fielded 1,004 self-reported RA patients (Honestly RA) to uncover the daily struggles, frustrations and triumphs of what it means to live with RA. Many of the statistics resonated with me.
One, I would love it if others could see how I feel. “90 Percent of people with RA agree or strongly agree that it’s frustrating when others don’t understand their level of pain.” I don’t even want my kids to feel the kind of pain I have sometimes, but it would be nice if they could understand it’s harder for me to keep up with them. Going up and down the stairs of our house is so hard, but to them it’s a simple request mom can you go get my jacket for me I’m cold. And I want to do things for them, but I have to remind them, I can’t. And it breaks my heart. “Nearly half (48 percent) of people with RA cited difficulty with chores such ass vacuuming or yard work as motivating factors in talking with their doctor about their current treatment regimen.”
Other statistics say that they can count on their health care provider to lend a hand. I remember mine was good at listening and never doubted me. It was hard being diagnosed at such a young age because so many people don’t believe that I have arthritis. “90 percent of people with RA feel their doctor or HCP listens to what is important to them.” “90 percent of people also feel their doctor or HCP involves them in the treatment decisions which is important.” Having an illness that makes you feel so isolated and misunderstood is really hard. It’s nice to learn that I’m not alone and that others feel the same way I do. I have hope that my good days will increase and I’ll be able to tackle those stairs.