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My life without meds

I have psoriatic arthritis. I am 47 years old and I am learning to do this without medication. I guess I decided to do this after I tried Methotrexate, it made me feel worse than the arthritis. Yes, I have flares and yes I have pain and I also have the skin issues. I try to eat right and get good exercise. I enjoy walking, it is painful at times so I do not push myself too hard on those days. I take ibuprofen when needed but the thing that helps the most is my chiropractor. She is so great, I call she gets me in right away. I find it really helps with the pain. I do not take herbal supplements. I have a lot of people ask me that question. I try to get good sleep but it is very important to stay active, I cannot stress that enough. I guess someday I may have to take medication but right now I choose to manage this on my own. I suppose everyone has a different pain tolerance, mine is pretty high. I just do my best to get through every day. And enjoy the good days when I get them.

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Comments

  • khamati
    3 months ago

    Hi Kerry,
    I’ve recently been diagnosed, and my practitioner is working with me to manage my disease. I saw the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol mentioned on some other PsA sites by members who have found that approach successful, and I have been trying to follow that lifestyle for about the past 4 months (and notice symptoms every time I fall “off the wagon”). I was wondering what dietary approaches you were taking, and how it is all working for you? (I will be reevaluating starting methotrexate or other dmards at my next appointment). I’ve also been considering adding a chiropractor to my health care team, your post makes me more committed to that approach, thank you!
    I’m thankful for this community, I feel like I’m among friends traveling on the same journey.

  • Leanne Donaldson
    2 months ago

    Hello @khamati 🙂 I also have been on the AIP diet (on and off) for some time now. If I am pretty good about it (especially staying away from gluten and dairy) then it seems to help for sure. I do run into hurdles along the way though for sure.
    I am a mom of 3 kids and sometimes I don’t have the time or energy required to follow such a strict “diet.” I find that it helps me stick to it much better if I look at it as “food as medicine.” Meaning that if I look at what I eat the same way I look at the medications I take then I am much more likely to make it a priority.
    Taking the time to plan my meals each week and using my Instapot make all the difference! I think a combined approach of dietary changes and prescribed meds (I’m on a biologic, NSAID’s, and Arava) works pretty well for me I suppose.
    I haven’t worked with a chiropractor myself, but another one of our advocates has. Here is a great article I thought you might be interested in if you are thinking about it…
    https://psoriatic-arthritis.com/living/chiropractic-care-pain-management-plan/

    We are so glad that you are here and very grateful for your kind words.
    🙂 -Leanne, Community Moderator

  • Kerry author
    3 months ago

    Hi Khamati,

    I walk everyday, I find the more that I move I feel better. Don’t get me wrong, I have days when I do not want to get out of bed. I hurt all over. I make myself get up and start my day. As far as diet I just try to watch my weight and eat healthy. Which, doesn’t always happen. Methotrexate did not agree with me. I had so many side affects on that. Some people use that and it works well for them. I think it truly depends on the person. I am sure at some point my Dr. will want me to go the biologic route but as of now I am trying to stay off of the meds.

  • CathyD moderator
    3 months ago

    Thank you for sharing your story and treatment choices with us, @kerry! It’s always great to hear the different ways that people manage. How often do you see your chiropractor?

    Also thanks for the friend request, I just accepted! 🙂 -Catherine, Community Moderator

  • Kerry author
    3 months ago

    If I am in pain I try to see her once a week. She is really good with people that have arthritis. I get a lot of relief from going. I am also a heart patient I have a pacemaker so I have to be very careful which meds I take etc.

  • Marieblossom
    4 months ago

    HI Kerry,
    I also haven’t been on any meds for many years. In the beginning of my diagnosis I did use NSAIDs and pulses of steroids. I also had a lot of mobility issues back then.
    I have no idea if my pain tolerance is high or low or in the middle, I just know I didn’t want to take meds all the time and I think for me the last years it was the right choice.
    Now, 11 years after diagnosis and at age 46 I am starting to worry about joint damage. I had my first xray of my hands in 9 years just last Tuesday. I haven’t talked to my doc yet, but I, having no real idea about X-rays, thought they looked pretty good, lol. I’ll find out more next week. If they are as good as I hope, I probably won’t consider any serious meds anytime soon. I will be doing a full evaluation in the next while, because I do want to make sure I am doing okay and not missing anything important or critical.

    So if not doing meds or biologics are your thing and joint damage and co-morbidities don’t scare you (they are starting to scare me!) then do what you think is right for your body. For me, I will try to avoid serious meds if I can, but I will re-evaluate if my flares get worse or if I feel my joints or anything else is at risk.
    Cheers and good thoughts to you!

  • Kerry author
    4 months ago

    Hi Marieblossom,

    I will say this, if pain pain would get out of control I would do meds. But right now I seem to be in a good place. People truly do not understand though. When I am in pain I get the look of “Oh your fine” Or people just simply think you are being a wimp. Anyway, it is nice to talk with people that understand.

  • Marieblossom
    4 months ago

    Wow, I am so sorry you are around people who don’t understand your pain. 🙁

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