When you have an ongoing health condition it can reduce your independence and stop you doing everyday things. But it doesn’t always have to be that way. For many people, having the right information, advice and support closer to home can help them manage symptoms while getting on with their lives.
That might mean knowing what to do if your symptoms get worse, rather than having to call 999. It might mean having some medical equipment or aids at home to help you manage day-to-day. Or it could be about getting some extra support so you can do what you want when you want.
Self-management, sometimes called self-care, means looking after yourself in a healthy way, whether it’s taking a medicine properly or doing some physical activity. For people who are living with a long-term health condition it may include other things like major dietary changes, different types of exercise or taking certain medication.
It also means still being able to do the things that are important to you – whether that’s pursuing a hobby or interest, seeing friends, going swimming… it’s about what you can do and want to do – not what you can’t.
Taking more control over managing your symptoms can have many benefits. For example, it can mean fewer visits to the GP, not ending up in hospital when you don’t need to, and being able to live more independently, with support on hand when you need it.
Self-management isn’t about leaving people to manage on their own. It’s about enabling people to be as independent as they can be, with support as needed. Self-management gives people control over their lives and choice about how they live them.
- Visit http://www.leedsdirectory.org/ to find out about local activities, services and support.
- Visit www.leeds.gov.uk/selfcare or email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information about self-management.
There’s also lots of information on the NHS Choices website about improving your health and wellbeing. You can read about how to: