Patient Engagement

Patient Education is one of the most important aspect of patient management.

Patient Education is one of the most important aspects of patient management. Education about the disease process, exacerbating factors, signs, and symptoms to monitor and diet and lifestyle modification including weight loss, exercises, and muscle strengthening may improve long-term outcomes in patients with various different types of arthritis. Adults with rheumatoid arthritis are given opportunities throughout the workshops on their disease to take part in educational activities that support self-management.


It is important that adults with rheumatoid arthritis are involved in making decisions about their care and have a good understanding of their condition and its management. This enables them to get the best from their medicines, to better manage flare-ups, pain and fatigue, as well as improving their overall quality of life. To ensure they get the greatest benefit, it is essential that adults with rheumatoid arthritis are offered educational and self-management activities and signposting to resources provided by patient organizations like MEAF, throughout the disease course and at times to suit individual needs.

Interactive Educational Activities

Interactive educational activities and self-management programs can be provided 1-to-1 in an informal setting, through self-study or computer-based interventions. They can also be provided in formal organized group sessions led by rheumatology healthcare professionals, wellbeing coaches, or trained lay leaders with arthritis or other chronic conditions. Different formats may be used, and should include patient information supported by written resources, to improve understanding of the condition and its management, and counter any misconceptions adults with rheumatoid arthritis may have. Educational activities may include lectures or facilitated interactive group discussions to increase knowledge and reduce concerns. Alternatively, regular skills practice, goal setting and home programs may be used to facilitate behavioral change. The opportunity to take part in existing educational activities and self-management programs should be offered to patients with rheumatoid arthritis throughout the course of their disease.


Self-Care Planner-Part 5
Manage Your Weight.


Manage your weight

    • Losing excess weight and staying at a healthy weight is particularly important for people with arthritis.
    • For people who are overweight or obese, losing weight reduces stress on joints, particularly weight-bearing joints like the hips and knees.
    • In fact, losing as little as 10 to 12 pounds can reduce pain and improve physical function for people with
    • At any age, low-impact, arthritis-friendly physical activity (for example, walking) combined with healthy
      dietary changes can help you lose weight.

Self-Care Planner-Part 4
Talk to Your Doctor.


Talk to your Doctor

Talk to your doctor if you have joint pain and other arthritis symptoms. It’s important to get an accurate
diagnosis as soon as possible so you can start treatment. Early and effective treatment is important to
minimize symptoms and prevent the disease from getting worse, especially for certain forms of arthritis, like
lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout.

The focus of arthritis treatment is to

  • Reduce pain.
  • Minimize joint damage.
  • Improve or maintain function and quality of life.

You can play an active role in controlling your arthritis by attending regular appointments with your health care provider and following your recommended treatment plan. This is especially important if you also have other chronic conditions, like diabetes or heart disease.

Self-Care Planner-Part 3
Be active.


Be Active.

    • Physical activity is a simple and effective, drug-free way to relieve arthritis pain.
    • Being physically active can reduce pain, improve function, mood, and quality of life for adults with arthritis.
    • Regular physical activity can contribute to improved sleep and support bone health, brain health, and
      weight control.
    • Physical activity can also reduce your risk of developing other chronic diseases, such as heart disease and
      diabetes, and help you manage these conditions if you already have them.
    • Stay as active as your health allows.
    • Some physical activity is better than none.

Self-Care Planner-Part 2
Simple daily strategies to reduce symptoms and get relief so you can pursue the activities that are important to you.


There are a lot of things on day to day basis you can do to manage your arthritis.


The day-to-day things you choose to do to manage your condition and stay healthy are “self-management” strategies and activities.


Practice simple strategies to reduce symptoms and get relief so you can pursue the activities that are important to you.


    • Learn new self-management skills. Join a self-management education workshop, which can help you learn the skills to manage your arthritis and make good decisions about your health.
    • Implement self-management care at home.
    • Learning strategies to better manage your arthritis can help you: Feel more in control of your health.
    • Manage pain and other symptoms.
    • Plan and carry out valued activities, like working and spending time with loved ones Reduce stress.
    • Improve your mood.
    • Communicate better with your health care provider(s) about your care.

Self-Care Planner-Part 1
Journaling with Arthritis – Daily, Weekly, and Monthly Trackers


Keeping a journal is a practice that a lot of people already do. You may even be one of them — perhaps you jot down thoughts about each day as it comes to a close, or seek motivation and courage by baring your soul to the page.


Today we’re here to talk about using a journal for another practical purpose — tracking your arthritis treatment journey, in order to better manage your routine and track results, and to remember what works and what doesn’t.


Journaling can be used for far more than tracking romantic crushes or reflecting on one’s past. It’s actually a perfect tool to better your future. Join us, and you may even find yourself noting other stuff about your routines and practices as well, perhaps things you’d never taken the time to notice before.


Some find it useful to type their journal into a doc on their computer or tablet, rather than writing by hand. Tablets can be very handy, and they’re larger than mobile phones but still offer touchscreen typing rather than having to push down keys at every letter.


Lastly, speech-prompted typing software can be used during periods of extreme pain.

Journal tip: There’s no need to write expansive paragraphs if complete sentences are too painful. Use abbreviations and symbols to note treatments, feelings, and successes/failures. For example: a Doctor’s visit can be abbreviated to DV, while exercise can be noted with an “E” or “S” (for stretching). Medications can be noted by their first two letters, and even daily activities like work (W), Time with Kids (K), and Rest Periods (RP) can be noted in shorthand. Use bullet points to separate notations, with a header like “Today’s activity”