Believe me, I’m not as crazy as the title makes me sound. Here’s the thing: when you have RA, you’re in pain most of the time. Even on days when the fatigue doesn’t hit you, you’re bound to have joint pain. Since being negative and complaining about it usually only makes it worse, at least for me, I try to find other ways to find some temporary relief. Along with my daily doses of Plaquenil and Celebrex, I’ve noticed that heat does wonders for my joints. Hence the hand dryer. On cold days, rainy days, or any other day that I’m flaring, I go into the bathroom at work every so often just to run my hands under the air dryers. I find that it loosens up my joints just enough to make it easier for me to type. Okay, maybe I am crazy, but I’d rather have people look at me like I’m nuts than not be able to do anything productive all day.
Obviously, the hand dryer only works for your hands. It doesn’t do much for knees or toes. However, that’s where my dehumidifier comes in. I live in a basement apartment, and the winter weather is brutal on the joints. So, I crank up the dehumidifier to full blast and let the temperature go up to 80 degrees in the apartment. Since the whole idea behind the thing is to pull moisture out of the air, it really helps me feel great overall. No stiffness or aching a majority of the time. On days that are a bit worse, you do feel a little stiff, but it’s much better than it would be without a dehumidifier. You definitely need to keep a fan on in the room though. My poor boyfriend almost had a heat stoke because it can become stifling at times. I totally recommend a dehumidifier if you have joint pain though. They aren’t expensive; we didn’t pay more than $100 for ours.
I’m stuck with this disease for the rest of my life. It’s not going to magically get better one day. The best approach to finding relief is a proactive one, whether that means holding a hair dryer to your toes or wrapping yourself up in an electric blanket. Even the most rudimentary methods will help. Trust me.