Why Am I an Advocate?

By Korinna Day
Updated 2024-03-11 21:23:57 | Published 2023-05-20 18:27:18
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  • Psoriatic Arthritis
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    • In the Psoriatic Arthritis section of the iMedix Blog, delve into topics around this inflammatory arthritis linked to psoriasis. Find information on symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options, and living tips, providing valuable support for patients and their caregivers.

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Advocate

Hi everyone. It's been about a year and a half since I started my blogging journey with iMedix, and I want to take a moment to express my gratitude to them for giving me the platform to raise awareness about psoriatic arthritis and share my personal experiences with it.

What is an Advocate?

You might be wondering why I choose to talk about my pain, struggles, and challenges with the world. Well, let me explain. When I was first diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, I had never even heard of it before. This was back in the early 2000s, before social media and online support groups existed. I felt incredibly isolated and alone in my journey. But now, things have changed. There are countless Facebook groups and hashtags dedicated to this disease, providing a way for people like me to connect and support one another.

I share my experiences to let others know that they are not alone. Each person's arthritis journey is unique, with different obstacles and varied paths to finding relief. By sharing my story, I hope to give others a glimpse into what it's like and offer them some comfort in knowing that they are not alone.

Another reason I talk about my experiences is to give a voice to men with psoriatic arthritis. In my journey as a patient advocate, I have noticed that the majority of people I connect with are female. While these women are incredible advocates and play a vital role in raising awareness, I believe it's important to also highlight the experiences of men. Men often feel pressure to tough it out or avoid seeking medical help. But it's essential for men to know that it's okay to acknowledge their chronic disease and seek treatment.

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I also speak out for those who don't feel comfortable sharing their own stories. Since starting my blog, I have discovered that a few of my friends also have psoriatic arthritis. They have reached out to me privately, expressing their gratitude for my willingness to be open about our shared struggle. While they may not feel ready to share their own experiences, they appreciate knowing that someone is speaking on their behalf.

Additionally, I answer questions from friends and acquaintances who are also affected by psoriatic arthritis. I make it clear that I'm not a medical professional and cannot provide medical advice. However, I can share my personal experiences and offer guidance on navigating doctor visits, insurance, and finding helpful non-medical devices. Being open about my journey has created a space for these conversations to happen.

Lastly, I believe in the importance of providing a patient perspective. When I was first diagnosed, it was challenging to find personal accounts of how individuals coped with the pain and symptoms of arthritis. Most of the information available focused solely on the disease itself. Now, after almost 20 years, I am starting to see more stories from patients like me, sharing tips, tricks, and what has worked for them. Patient representation matters, and I am determined to continue advocating for our voices to be heard.

I consider myself an accidental advocate. I never sought out this opportunity to share my story, but now that I have it, I want to make the most of it. I want to stay connected with others who are going through similar experiences and create a support network for those with psoriatic arthritis.

If you or someone you know is affected by psoriatic arthritis, I encourage you to join our Facebook Support Group for additional resources and a community of individuals who understand what you're going through.

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Korinna Day is verified user for iMedix

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