I WILL CONQUER MY RA

Are you grappling to come to terms with your arthritis? Is your arthritis incapacitating you?
Read on…

All of us have been talking how aggressive & early treatment with DMARDs is the best way to achieve conquest over RA. However, this is just a part of the jigsaw, definitely a major one. However, that’s not all for success. There is that additional piece of the jigsaw forgotten by many– the healing power of positive thinking.

The Law of attraction states that you will attract whatever your energy, attention & thoughts are focused on. Whatever vibes you send out will come back to you in a similar form. This law explains the healing power of positive thinking.

How do you start your day? Here is the concept of the ‘Morning Power questions’. I still remember one of my patients mentioning the pain she has due to RA in the morning. She compares the pain to hundreds of leeches all over her body & sucking blood. Yes, no doubt, this is precisely the pain & morning stiffness associated with RA. But then look at the effect it would have on her morale. If you get up in the morning with such a thought, how good would your entire day be? Even if things improve, will you really do well with such kind of a thought process? This, I am sure, is not the best thing to do in the morning. Why not change it to a more positive approach? When you get up in the morning why not hold your head high, chin up, take a deep breath & tell yourself that you are improving every other day. Tell yourself repeatedly that you will conquer your RA.

Trying a new drug? May be Methotrexate or a new biologic. If you are overwhelmed by the thoughts about its side effects, you will always be anxious & devote your thoughts & energy to the side effects rather than the effects. Law of attraction may just spoil the future for you. Why not change to a more positive approach? Tell yourself repeatedly that Methotrexate is the best drug for RA & I will conquer my RA with Methotrexate. You should definitely find out more about the effects & side effects of Methotrexate but don’t let this information make you anxious & uncertain about the effects of Methotrexate. Same for biologic… in fact you should first thank heaven for the fact that you have been able to afford a biologic. There are so many others who, despite in bad need of a biologic, are not able to afford it. Here in India, most of the medical expenditure is out of pocket, & many patients are waiting for affordable generics for years purely because they cannot afford the present ones. So, don’t you think that you consider yourself lucky, thank heavens & tell yourself that you are getting one of the best medicines on the planet for RA & it should help you conquer your RA.

Many RAers are very positive about RA but as soon as a flare comes, they panic. Flares are a part & parcel of any chronic disease. Why don’t you chalk out a plan for a flare with your Rheumatologist. Instead of panicking & slipping into depression, put the plan into action immediately. Anxiety & depression can worsen your flare. Once the flare action plan is in action, you can better tell yourself that medicines will act & flare will settle soon.. I will conquer my RA.

Whether one believes in the Law of attraction is a different proposition, but positive attitude & thoughts should definitely help. One of the best examples is the placebo effect. Placebo effect is a phenomenon wherein patients’ symptoms are alleviated by an ineffective treatment. In clinical trials, patients are divided into two groups. One receives the medicines (eg. In tablet form); while the other group receives the placebo (tablets of inert substance that look exactly like the active medicine tablet- eg sugar pill). Many of the patients who receive the placebo do well with it. The explanation for this effect is that these patients must have taken this placebo with a lot of hope/ faith & positive thinking.

Now if a placebo effect is possible with inert substances like sugar pills, then why not with active medicines like Methotrexate. So, throw those negative thoughts out of the window & start thinking positively. Every morning when you get up, hold your head high, chin up, take a deep breath & tell yourself that you will do well & will conquer your RA.

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28 Responses to I WILL CONQUER MY RA

  1. sara says:

    WOW! what a brilliant post Dr Akerkar! As you already know i’m an absolute advocate for positive thinking..i couldn’t possible go on if i wasn’t positive and upbeat about my RA – admittedly i do find it difficult sometimes when in pain/extreme tiredness takes over, but i kick back and try and pull myself out of it.

    I spend a lot of energy, whittling away, worrying and analyzing the side effects of the prospective drugs. Obviously its important to know what i am taking and what the drugs are about, but i should be channeling these energies more into being positive, and thanking God for the nhs, who provide them free in the UK.

    As you say the power of thought really does effect the way we approach our disease – lets make it work positively by helping our RA get better rather than making it worse.

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/UK-autoimmune-arthritis-group/156085881075951

    a group of people trying to be positive about their autoimmune arthritis – this post will encourage a lot of the people on there..

    SARA

  2. rachel says:

    i will conquer my arthritis :) :)
    thank you

  3. Nagesh wagholikar says:

    I had contacted you when my wife told that there is a little bit of flareup in her condition. Thanks as you immediately responded. Actually it was not my wife but it was me who panicked a little bit. So I shared with you. Her condition is now better and I am happy.She has accepted the fact that For the present total cure is impossible. She is happy with whatever relief she gets. Remember she got some relief in her condition (may it be OA or RA)after long search for treatement of 18 years. She is happy so I am.

    Since she is now on good medication and under treatment of good hands, I am not worried. But I do not wish to stop until I find an answer to “What causes RA ?”

    The question remains unanswered. But key to answer lies with the patients. The patients must help the doctor or researcher to find the answers. The possible causes are known to every patient so far as their life style, inheritance,wrong treatement etc are concerned, but they never think of it, even if they think of it, they are unable to express.

    I will try to find it out since we have lived together for more than 37 years. I would share with you,so that you may have some additional data for finding out possible cause.

    “The vast universal suffering feel as thine:
    Thou must bear the sorrow that thou claimst to heal;
    The day-bringer must walk in darkest night.
    He who would save the world must share its pain.
    If he knows not grief, how shall he find grief’s cure? “

  4. Nagesh wagholikar says:

    My above thoughts may be crude in language as they have directly been posted. But the direction is clear. Accept the facts and then try to find a solution. A little relief from sufferings has also to be enjoyed.One must be able to find happiness in even in small things, that is the message I indirectly receive from my wife.

  5. isbn:978-1-60911-248-6

    I am also an advocate for positive thinking and having work with the powers of my mind over many years with persistence, trial and error… i find this to be very true

    Thanks!

  6. hi!This was a really impressive post!
    I come from itlay, I was luck to search your website in digg
    Also I learn much in your topic really thank your very much i will come later

  7. kavitasharma says:

    I’ve really started feeling positive even in flare ups n having drastic pain. By taking regular medication, exercise and positive thought to conquer RA, I believe one day we all will conquer RA.
    As rightly said by Mr. Nagesh, even I would like to know the real cause of RA. So that, our next generation can be kept far away from such severe disease.

    • Nagesh Wagholikar says:

      Just think. Search past, your lifestyle, food habits,any habits, history of your diseases,your surrounding envioronment, diseases suffered by your mother, father, grand mother grand father and so on. You may perhaps and may be very remotely be able to trace the cause. I am not sure. If you feel that you have been able to some coonction you may share with your doctor. It may or may not help immediately. But the data will be there. And in future some researcher may find the cause or causes. If cause is found it may help for prevention, and to find cure for future generation. Best of luck. Be positive. Wherever there is a problem, there is always a solution. I am not a doctor but husbund of RA patient.

  8. Sudesh says:

    Dr- Thank you for the nice write up. You are very motivating. Sudesh

  9. nageshaw says:

    My wife does not know what is the medication that is given to her. She takes it regularly and religiously. Even if she does not know what kind of medication she is on, she certinly knows that Dr. Akerkar’s medicines is working wonders for her. This the power of faith as well as the power of right diagnosis and proper medication. Faith can do much wonders.!!

  10. nageshaw says:

    In continuation of my wife’s experience as written on Nov 16th, I would like to add something more.
    What would have happened if I had R.A ? I would have certaily studied the drugs on internet, would have read the side effects, then would have got panicked. And above all I would have invited all the symptoms of side effects of the drugs through my imagination. As seen from my wifes’s example,faith pays.If we don’t have strong mind set, never read effects, side effects of the treatment. It may spoil us. So let us have faith in the drugs as DMARD is the best treatment available.We should be thankful to god that we are getting the best treatment available, which was not availble to our ancesters.WE can lead near normal life with DMARD.

  11. S.Sampath Kumar says:

    My name is Sampath Kumar. Male, aged 66 years. Diagonised as having RA three years back. Through a reference went to Dr. Akerkar for consultation and treatment. The first year was tough. Lots of pain in all minor joints. Swellings and immobility. Normal simple functions could not be done. Like Combing the Hair, Zipping & unzipping of pants and button & unbuttoning of shirts, opening the caps of bottles etc. Took all the medicine the Doctor prescribed. The dreaded RA was slowly scaled down. Now after nearly three years, almost settled into continous remission for the last four months. The medicine I take are Arava, Folitrax 2.5, Fovite, HCQS. When the symptoms were severe I used to take some minor steroid prescriptions only for a very short period of ten to fifteen days on a continual decreasing scale as per the doctor’s advice. Now it is a visit to the doctor every three months and to tune up the doses.

    iI am sure if you follow the doctors advice, the RA would come to control. I did have lots of pain and that is a thing of the past now. I suggest all of you who suffer this, please do not lose heart and bear the pain, visit the doctor regularly and take his advice on prescriptions seriously. You will be fine.

    Please check back with me for any clarifications.. Best of luck to the fellow RA sufferers…

    Sampath Kumar.

    • rehana says:

      Dear Kumar,

      You are lucky to have a good Rheumie. I have been suffering from RA since last 5 years.

      I do not have access to a Rheumatologist here. I’ve been seeing an Ortho surgeon. The first thing he told me when I was diagnosed to have RA is.. there is no cure for RA. RA never settles & that I’ll have to learn to live with it & continue taking all my life..

      Life has been really frustrating with all the pain & suffering. I have even started developing deformities in my hands now.

      Probably, I should see a Rheumatologist asap… just that the distance I have to travel makes things difficult.

      Thanks for the encouraging words. May be I’ll see a Rheumie & may be it’ll change my world….

      • S.Sampath Kumar says:

        Dear Rehana,

        It is sad that you do not have an access to the expert on RA. I do suggest that you contact Dr.Akerkar over telephone or thru his e mail on this site and take his advice. The earlier you take the treatment, the faster it can stabilize at the present level. It is imperative that you do not lose your cool. If you mention where you stay Dr.Akerkar could guide you to a specialist around there.

        All the best…. Sampath Kumar.

  12. Love your comments. I firmly believe if one dwells on the pain and limitations of RA it becomes a viscous circle and gets worse a d worse . I have RA and it is horrible but so are many chronic illnesses . Think of he motivation behind cancer patients and the livestrong or pink ribbon camapign or the unbelievable motivation of so many paraplegic and amputee troops coming back from war some even trying to reinlist

    • Yes Laura.

      In fact, I would like RAers who are doing well to come forward & help those who are not doing so well. They can inspire those who are doing well with their example. I’ve started a RA voice campaign for the same.

      Hope more & more RAers join in & spread the positive feeling & hope for others.

  13. Cathy says:

    What a beautiful post! Thanks so much for sharing.

    I have found that a postive attitude makes a HUGE difference in my RA. When I am flaring, I make sure I allow time to “thank” my joints for the wonderful work they are doing. I visualize my joints in a happy place.

    • Yes indeed, Cathy.

      Positive attitude with aggressive DMARD therapy remains the best treatment for RA.
      I really liked the concept of thanking the joints during the flare.

  14. ecstacy01 says:

    Thanks a ton @ doctorakerkar for sharing this inspiring and confidence boosting blog!! It sure makes lot of positive difference to have a positive thoughts as they become thing and become reality of our lives.

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