Getting any physical or mental health diagnosis puts high levels of stress on you. As soon as your doctor confirms the results, you begin the process of coping with the news, whether you want to or not.
To improve the quality of your life, set your sights on using the best coping skills you can. They will be uncomfortable at times, and they will seem to make things worse instead of better, but the long-term benefits are worth the short-term frustrations.
Follow these steps for coping well with your arthritis diagnosis.
1. Freak Out
You might be surprised by step one. Not many people will tell you to panic when you hear about a new diagnosis, but it can actually be a great start to the process.
When people first hear about a diagnosis, they tend to be very calm and intellectual. They begin to look at facts and figures. They begin to know their situation rather than “feel” their situation. This can lead to a lack of emotional understanding and perpetual denial of the situation.
Freaking out early ensures that you understand the situation. Keep in mind that most people experience something along the lines of panic during their coping process. Doing it early helps to limit the negative outcomes.
The trick is to set a timeline for your period of emotional frenzy. A few hours, a day or a week can be enough to push through denial and move on to step two. Set your timeline early before too much time elapses.