Arthritis can impact nearly every aspect of your daily life, from the way you work to the way you climb into bed at night. If you're planning a move in the coming weeks and months, you're surely aware that some challenges are on the horizon. Packing boxes, driving, and even shuffling through moving-related paperwork can all be harder when your joints are stiff and sore. Here are some tips to help you get through the moving process with less pain and anguish.
Hone in on your treatment protocols right now.
If you've been letting certain aspects of your arthritis care slip, now is the time to fine-tune your treatment before you begin having to tackle the task of moving. For instance, if you've been neglecting to perform your physical therapist-recommended exercises, get back into that routine today. If you have not been taking your anti-inflammatory drugs regularly, start paying closer attention to your schedule. Many arthritis treatments take a while to have their full effect, so if you start now, you'll be feeling better by the time you need to move.
Start completing a few tasks early.
When you have arthritis, you might start off the day thinking you'll be able to pack 8 boxes, only to develop pain that forces you to drop out after only packing 6. To ensure you complete all necessary tasks related to your move on time, it's helpful to start early so that you can move at a slow pace and avoid having to push yourself on days you're not feeling well.
Some tasks you can likely complete ahead of time include:
- Packing rarely used items like decorations, extra linens, and out-of-season clothing
- Cleaning spare rooms, extra bathrooms, and storage spaces
- Gathering boxes from places like discount stores and warehouses
Avoid unnecessary packing steps.
Some people tend to get over-zealous when they pack before a move. While wrapping every single plate in tissue paper, folding your underwear neatly, and organizing your towels into boxes by color may all be ideal if you had unlimited time and resources, your arthritis does impose a limit on your abilities. Cut out any unnecessary packing tasks to simplify your move. Examples of ways to do this include:
- Leaving clothes and other soft items in dresser drawers and trunks rather than packing and transporting them separately.
- Layering dishes and glasses between linens for protection, rather than taking the time to wrap each one. (Make exceptions for any dishes that are valuable, but don't waste time being overly careful with inexpensive, everyday dishes).
- Leaving furniture in one piece rather than disassembling it prior to moving.
Ask for help well in advance.
As someone with arthritis, you may be tired of always having to call on your friends and family members for help. But don't let your guilt cause you to attempt moving on your own and injuring yourself. As long as you ask well in advance and are specific about your needs, you'll likely find that friends are very understanding of your need for help during the move. Ask people who you know are physically strong and reliable. Tell them exactly what day you will need their help, what time you want them to arrive, and approximately how long you'll need them there. This makes it easier for your helpers to plan, which makes them more likely to agree to help.
Moving with arthritis can be challenging, especially if the arthritis affects joints in your hands or arms. If you can afford to do so, your best bet may be to hire a full-service moving company. They can pack all of your items, load them into a truck, and transport them to your new home. This greatly reduces your risk of arthritis pain and injuries during the move.
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