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A Few of My Favorite Things: 10 Products That Help Me Manage My Illness

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Editor's Note

Any medical information included is based on a personal experience. For questions or concerns regarding health, please consult a doctor or medical professional.

I share products that I like frequently on social media… but I’ve never made a list of some products I use often (which I’ve wanted to do for a while). Rather than make a huge list which I could easily do, I figured I’d start with 10 of my favorite things. These products are great in my opinion. I am not being compensated for you looking into them. They’re also all available on Amazon and Prime (jackpot!). And who doesn’t love packages in the mail!? I hope you enjoy!

1. Migrelief

This supplement was recommended to me years ago from a neurologist. It needs to build up in your body first but is meant to help prevent migraines. It contains feverfew, riboflavin and magnesium. I buy straight from Amazon, and even have it set up to deliver every month! I’ve been taking two a day for the past few years and recommend it to anyone who struggles with migraines.

2. Compression Gloves

These gloves were recommended to me from a friend who also has lupus. She said they were great helping with joint pain in her hands, so I had to try them. They are amazing! They are tight, but not too tight, and the constriction really helps when I’m suffering from pain.

3. Koo-Care Large Flexible Gel Ice Pack & Wrap with Elastic Straps for Hot Cold Therapy

When my husband and I first started dating he bought me this when he realized how often I iced myself. The velcro straps allow it to securely stay on which is great. It also can be heated and act as a heating pad which is an added bonus!

4. Pulse Oximeter

A pulse oximeter is an instrument that measures blood oxygen saturation levels, pulse rate and pulse strength… basically, the amount of oxygen you’re receiving and your heart rate. I bought this when my POTS was really acting up because I wanted to document what my heart rate was when I’d stand up or when I’d be lying down and it would be racing. I found this simple one made by Zacurate and it’s been very helpful and extremely easy to use.

5. Night Wrist Support Brace

Due to my hypermobility, I tend to sleep in very twisted positions. One that started causing me pain three years ago was bending my left wrist completely down while I’d sleep. I don’t know why I’d do this, but I’d wake up in the morning with my wrist in an incredible amount of pain. I found this brace on Amazon (clearly I love Amazon… Prime is life), and it’s helped tremendously. It’s super soft so it doesn’t bother you when you sleep and doesn’t let your wrist move at all.

6. Trigger Point Grid Original Foam Roller

I used to use this a lot more than I currently do. It’s a great product, but I stick to #7 below more now because I lost muscle mass and this one doesn’t let you control the pressure as much. But… when I was using this… oh mannnn it hurt so good. I highly suggest watching videos on the correct form. When I first got it I would just roll. Then, I went to the TP Therapy’s website , and it opened a ton of new doors (and ways to utilize the roller to get the most out of it). I really can’t wait to be able to use this again… soon!

7. SKLZ Massage Bar

This bar I use every night before bed. I was told by my rheumatologist to roll over my hips and my IT band to hopefully stretch out my cortisone injections… and it actually works. The first month after she said that and I started rolling, instead of getting my injections three months later I got them five months later! It’s great because you can completely control how much pressure you use. I started rolling very lightly over each hip about three times and worked my way up to 10 with increased pressure. I also like this roller more than other ones I saw because it doesn’t have the grid on it (which makes me bruise more). It’s flat and less abrasive, and was suggested by a physical therapist to try one similar to this. Although the bruising from rolling isn’t “bad” for me, it’s not fun when my legs are covered in them.

8. Fitbit Alta Fitness Tracker

I actually got this as a birthday gift two years ago, and have worn it almost every day (unless the joint pain in my wrists is unbearable). I wanted one for a while but didn’t realize how beneficial it would be. My rheumatologist actually uses it with me! She is able to see how many steps I take and how long I sleep, and based on the data she can make suggestions on where she thinks I should be. Side note – I’m a huge data nerd so when she realized I had a Fitbit and we could use this to help me I geeked out a little bit. Anyways, I tried a few different fitness trackers and really liked this one the best because it’s not big and bulky, it doesn’t bother me to sleep with (and I don’t sleep with jewelry), and it’s simple and easy to use. Visit Fitbit’s website for more information and see all the cool perks it has, such as groups you can join and challenges you can complete with friends or anyone using one!

9. Bed of Nails Pillow

Well. This pillow is amazing, but it was my nemesis at first. It contains a ton of little spikes that simulate acupressure and due to tension headaches, I lay with it under my neck. I was a big baby the first few times (even though after about one minute I’d be relaxed), but now it’s nothing. It’s amazing. I love acupuncture but this is great to use whenever you want. Rather than having to make an appointment somewhere you can use this in the comfort of your own home.

10. My Amazing Pill Case… I saved my favorite for last!

I truly love all of these products, but I think I consider this my favorite because I use it throughout every single day. It separates the case into each day, so you can carry just one day with you rather than the entire case. Also, each day is separated into four sections. I use these as waking up meds, breakfast meds, dinner meds and bedtime meds. I’ve recommended this to a ton of people and really love this one.

If you have any questions about any of these products please don’t hesitate to reach out and ask. I feel like I could’ve made this list much longer. Instead, I started with the items I use most frequently and aren’t that expensive. I also think people who don’t have chronic illnesses can benefit from a number of these products as well!

This story originally appeared on In the Loop.

Originally published: December 20, 2018
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