Self-management health skills are the techniques that let us control our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Through these skills, we execute these thoughts and feelings at the right time and help them set their priorities. If you have strong self-management skills, you’re able to set goals independently, plan your actions, and achieve them with determination and ambition.
Self Management Health Skills help people be more vigilant about their physical and mental wellness. It means being in charge of your health and taking responsibility to ensure that your body and mind are functioning well. It is essential to have these self-management health skills because sooner or later, one has to be independent, and we can not have a doctor around us all the time. We must start building the skills by setting the goals, making good choices, and achieving them with skills and confidence.
Chronic and Acute Illness
A chronic illness is an ongoing one, whereas an acute is one that doesn’t last very long, typically less than 12 weeks. An example of chronic disease is Diabetes, Asthma, or Arthritis, whereas Pneumonia and Dengue would be examples of acute illness. Acute infections may lead to a chronic condition if left untreated.
Whether your condition is chronic or acute, you must take care of your body to prevent further illness or complications.
Go in for efficient and useful treatments instead of cumbersome ones. Taking care of your health is vital to lead a satisfied, wealthy, and happy life. Self-Management Health Skills are more involved in Chronic Diseases.
How to Improve Self-Management Health Skills?
1) Personal Responsibility and Awareness
We should be aware of the changes taking place in our bodies that can affect our health. We should check our weight from time to time, get our blood test done in case the functioning of our body deviates from what’s considered normal. It is our responsibility to take our medicines on time. In chronic diseases, we must visit our doctor from time to time to improve our self-management health skills.
2) Physical Activity
To be healthy, one must exercise regularly. Exercises keep a person fit and boost self-confidence by improving the appearance of the body. They also enhance the working of the organs.
Physical activity energizes the body and adds strength and toughness to it. It makes the body flexible and also has enhanced mental efficacy.
Games like Football, Cricket, and Basketball make a person spontaneous, agile, and improve reaction time. Swimming and Yoga activate every part of the body.
Practice breathing exercises for healthy lungs. You can also add meditation to your morning routine. It brings peace of mind and helps the person relax.
3) Always Eat Healthily
Eating healthy does not mean eating less; it means eating the right food that contains all crucial requirements.
Filling your plate with nutritious foods like vegetables, fruits, pulses, and whole grains, with the right amount of vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates, will help protect your body against chronic disease, including heart disease and diabetes.
Avoid fad diets, which are short-lived and unsustainable. In short, you must eat a balanced diet. Watch your total fat sources and moderate intake to a healthy garnish. Excess fat can quickly sabotage your weight loss goals because it is dense in calories.
Increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables. They are healthy and yummy as well! The choice of food is a critical aspect of Self-Management Health Skills.
4) Managing Pain and Fatigue
Analyses indicate that patients and caregivers who put in less effort were low in self-efficacy for managing pain and fatigue. There were noticeable associations between self-efficacy and self-management.
Patients deficient in self-efficacy reported significantly higher levels of pain and fatigue symptoms, depression, anxiety, and worse physical and functional structure, as did patients whose caregivers were less responsible and attentive.
A regular sleep schedule, a healthy diet, and regular exercise may help lessen fatigue. Consuming less caffeine during the day and avoiding caffeine at night may also help.
We must take precautions to reduce all kinds of pain
Plan to do the activity for okay periods, and mean stopping the training before your body makes you stop (pain and fatigue).
5) Managing Stress
You should focus on stress management rather than stress avoidance and a broader sense of purpose rather than constant positive emotions. Effective stress management is also a part of self-health management skills and can be done in the following ways:
1) Keep a positive and optimistic attitude.
2) Be assertive instead of aggressive. Convey your feelings, opinions, or beliefs instead of becoming angry and resentful.
3) Learn and practice relaxation techniques like breathing exercises, pranayams, and meditation for stress management. You can simply just talk and share your feelings with someone who understands you well.
4) Exercise Regularly. Your body can fight stress better when it is in good physical condition.
5) Learn to manage your time more effectively and set deadlines for yourself.
6) Focus on and take action in alignment with what matters the most rather than wasting time on activities that don’t matter.
7) Make time for hobbies, interests, and relaxation.
8) Get enough rest. Your body needs time to recuperate from stressful events.
9) Don’t rely on alcohol, drugs, or compulsive behaviors to reduce stress because it has temporary effects and eventually gives you more stress and anxiety.
10) Seek out social support. Spend enough time with those you enjoy.
11) Seek treatment with a psychologist to learn healthy ways of dealing with the stress in your life.
Go easy on yourself, and don’t be too harsh with yourself if you falter. Everybody makes mistakes, terrible ones, but the beauty lies in dealing with them gracefully and learning from them. Mental Health is equally vital as Physical.
6) Working Effectively With Health Care Professionals
Patients are deeply interested in their care and must be part of the communication process, too; their early and wholehearted involvement has been also shown to minimize errors and future adverse events.
Have you ever had a detailed talk with your primary care provider about your health? Your primary care provider should be able to discuss your total body health to prevent further illness.
Make sure you ask your doctor for a complete body wellness plan and set goals for yourself to lead a more enjoyable lifestyle and better Self-Management Health Skills.
Patients should talk openly and honestly about their illness and let them know their health history to prescribe the correct medicine. Communicating effectively with doctors can drastically improve Self-Management Health Skills.
Healthy and robust communication is key to the successful running of daily operations, no matter the role you play. Open and direct contact can save the day — or a life!
7) Personal Hygiene
This is the most critical aspect of Self-Management Health Skills. Personal Hygiene involves maintaining the cleanliness of our body and clothes. The purpose of personal hygiene is to reduce the incidence and spread of infectious diseases.
Personal hygiene is essential for its social impact. Nobody wants to have social relations with a person who has poor personal hygiene.
For personal hygiene, attention must be paid to the care and cleanliness of the following:-
If the skin is not cleaned regularly, our pores will be blocked. In such a condition, waste products stick to the skin and cause itching and irritation. We must take a bath daily and must clean our private parts to avoid infection. When you go out on a sunny day, use sunscreen to prevent sunburns.
If we do not take care of our hair on the head, it may become a breeding ground for lice. Sometimes they may cause a severe type of fever. We must comb our hair regularly, and use oil and shampoo to strengthen and clean it, respectively.
Try not to use too many different products in your hair. There are various yoga exercises also help in the healthy growth of hair.
Sharp and pointed objects should not be used to remove waste objects from our ears. You can use soft cotton. Do not listen to loud music, as this may damage your eardrums.
We must do various eye exercises in the morning. They are straightforward and easy ones that have positive effects. We should not rub our eyes in case of irritation. Consult your doctor when you notice a defect in your vision or start to experience blurred images.
If you already wear spectacles, make sure you wear them the entire time. At the time of reading or writing, there should be a fair amount of light in our room. The book or copy should be at a proper distance from the eyes(25 cm approx).
For proper care and cleanliness, the nose should be cleaned regularly. You must not put your finger inside your nose. This may lead to bleeding. For any wound in the nose, a doctor should be consulted for proper treatment.
Oral Hygiene includes teeth cleaning, tongue cleaning, and gum cleaning. Oral Hygiene helps avoid various dental problem and bad breath as well. The very first thing is to brush your teeth at least twice a day. The use of dental floss is significant because it removes decaying parts of food stuck between the teeth.
We should use a soft tongue cleaner to remove waste substances from the tongue gently; otherwise, taste buds get damaged. A jet stream is strong enough to remove waste substances from the gum.
Care of Hands and Feet:
You must carry a hand sanitizer to keep your hands clean at all times. If it is not possible to wash your hands at a particular time, a sanitizer may come in handy. Besides, we keep touching our faces and other parts with our hands, so it’s necessary to keep them clean.
Always wear comfortable footwear to prevent shoe bites. Make sure your feet are dry before putting on your socks; otherwise, it may cause infection.
Improve Sleep Quality
Try not to drink coffee after 3 or 4 pm. It may take up to 10 hours for coffee to entirely leave your system. Wake up at a consistent hour. This helps regulate your sleep-wake cycle.
Avoid taking naps longer than 30 mins or too close to your sleep cycle. They can mess up your circadian rhythm.
Increase exposure to sunlight during the day. This helps regulate sleep hormones. Reduce blue light exposure in the evening.
Have a fair amount of sleep so that you can function well the next day. Sleep is as essential as work. You must not compromise on your sleep unless necessary.
Self-Management Health Skills and Chronic Disease
Dealing with chronic disease makes that person his or her own first and foremost care provider. They must empower themselves by gaining confidence in self-care and mastery in self-management health skills.
Self-management support is the care and motivation provided to people with chronic conditions. Their families help them understand their central role in coping with their illness. This requires a collaborative relationship.
Studies suggest Self-Management Health Skills improve chronic illness outcomes by enhancing that person’s potential to fight that disease. Since chronic illness is for a long duration and progresses slowly, if appropriately managed by the patients, they can improve health outcomes to a great extent.
Self-management health skills are really about finding healthier ways to nurture your body, mind, and spirit.
The support of the physician is critical, and the physician should ensure that the patients are familiar with the essentials of their treatment.
These include dietary limitations. For example, diabetic patients are not allowed to have sugary edibles, very little rice, etc. They are supposed to follow a strict diet if their case is severe. They have their physical limitations.
A person in their old age should avoid lifting heavy object because it may cause Hernia. They have medication side effects that they’re supposed to know.
A person with many illnesses may have medicines that interact with each other, and so they need to be consumed as directed by their physician. Patients should also know how to access a network of professions and how further information can be sought.
Self-Management Health Skills must be available to the patients for the benefit of both the physician and the patient to achieve successful outcomes. Take control of your health, and don’t let your health take possession of you
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