Though exercise and sound nutrition are the basic tenets of any guide to a healthy lifestyle, these and other tips can be far more important to those living with diabetes, fibromyalgia, depression, and other chronic diseases.
A series of chronic disease self-management courses, offered at no cost by the Scotland Community Health Clinic, will begin next week.
A class will be held on Jan. 22, with classes each Tuesday until Feb. 26. The program was designed by the Stanford University School of Medicine’s Patient Education Research Center.
“They learn various tools that will help them manage the impact of their condition,” said Andy Kurtzman, executive director of the Scotland Community Health Clinic. “If they’re having pain, they may learn mental distraction techniques, ways to set goals so they can improve their behavior modification.”
The program is designed for those with chronic illnesses and those with close family members who are so afflicted. Each class will be held from 9-11 a.m. in the Scotland County Health Department education room, other than the Feb. 19 session, which will be from 1-3 p.m.
Sessions will be led by Kurtzman and Becky Snyder, a health educator with the diabetes care program at the community clinic, and will include a discussion component. They both were trained in the newest edition of the course at the Lumber River Council of Governments.
Topics will range from managing stress and fatigue to breathing and communication techniques.
“There was a study done of people who took the program; they improved their healthful behaviors and decreased their days in the hospital,” Kurtzman said. “It just helps them learn more about the emotions and the symptoms that go along with chronic illness. They learn how to use decision-making, medications, healthy eating, weight management, breathing techniques, all of these tools that they can use to better deal with their illness.
The course will be held again beginning in March, with sessions held during evening hours.
Call 277-9912 to register. Registration is limited to the first 15 to call, and participants should plan to attend all six sessions.