nvdaily.com link to home page

Traffic | Weather | Mobile Edition
      Subscribe | Special Sections

Local News arrow Front Royal arrow Health arrow Katie Demeria

| 0

New workshop aims to guide those with chronic illnesses

By Katie Demeria

FRONT ROYAL -- One of the participants in the Chronic Disease Self-Management Workshop was recently diagnosed with a disease that has so many possible treatments she is feeling overwhelmed.

A married couple attended as well, one of whom is both a caregiver and battling a chronic illness herself.

Jessica Bowling, wellness coach, and Tina Carter, a nurse with Warren Memorial Hospital, said they believe that by attending the six-week program that all of the participants will learn how to better handle their chronic illness -- and prevent it from taking over their lives.

Monday was what Bowling referred to as "Day Zero." She and Carter met with four individuals planning to take the workshop, which begins this Monday at Warren Memorial's Outpatient Center. and discussed their goals.

"It gets people back to the basics," Bowling said. "It's just a very basic program teaching skills and lifestyle management in a way that's doable. It doesn't overwhelm people. We break things down."

The workshop teaches participants skills like using the mind to manage symptoms, making action plans, problem solving and dealing with difficult emotions.

It also includes practical suggestions for improving everyday life, such as preventing falls, better breathing, healthy eating and communication skills.

Bowling said participants will set goals for themselves, and every week the class will address how each individual is doing in keeping up with the "action plans" and meeting their goals.

"This is also a program for caretakers and family members who are struggling with taking care of people with chronic diseases to help them manage themselves," Bowling said.

She added that caretakers can oftentimes feel as overwhelmed by a loved one's illness as the patient. Learning to cope with those feelings, communicate and live a healthy lifestyle will help everyone involved overcome the disease.

Carter and Bowling said the most common illnesses they expect to see will likely be diabetes and arthritis. But Carter pointed out that the program also helps people deal with depression, which some may not realize they're battling.

Carter stressed that the illness itself does not have to be categorized in any specific way.

"If you feel it's a chronic condition, it doesn't have to have a label, it doesn't have to be diabetes or arthritis," she said. "If this is something that impacts your life, that you have to deal with every day, then it's a chronic condition."

The workshop was developed through Stanford University. Bowling and Carter were able to participate in training through a grant. The next step is to bring it Valley Health-wide, and this fall the class may be offered in Winchester. For now, though, it is only available in Front Royal.

"It's a ready-made program that will help people become their best selves on their own," Bowling said. "Despite what their doctors or their wives or their husbands are telling them to do, this is something that gets them back to what they want to accomplish.

The class costs $60 for all six weeks, but scholarships are available for those in need. It is held every Monday from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Warren Memorial Hospital Outpatient Center. Contact Bowling at 540-635-0720 or at jbowling@valleyhealthlink.com for more information.

Contact staff writer Katie Demeria at 540-465-5137 ext. 155, or kdemeria@nvdaily.com

Keep up to date on local news

Sign up here to receive Northern Virginia Daily news delivered to your email box each morning and when breaking news occurs.


Comments that are posted represent the opinion of the commenter and not the Northern Virginia Daily/nvdaily.com. View our comments/submisssions policy. Report abuse by clicking the X next to the comment.

Local News Sections

Affordable Care Act Agency on Aging Agriculture Alex Bridges Apple Blossom Festival Aviation Basye Berryville Boyce Brad Fauber Breaking News Business Charities Civil War Clarification Clarke County Colleges Corrections Courthouse Notes: Permits, Transactions Courts & Legal News Crime & Public Safety Economy and Jobs Edinburg Education Edward N. Bell Election 2012 Election 2013 Entertainment Environment Fairs & Festivals Fire & Rescue Fishers Hill Fort Valley Frederick County Front Royal George Washington National Forest Guest Column Hard Times Health History Holidays Homes In The Spotlight Jeff Nations Joe Beck Josette Keelor Katie Demeria Kim Walter Ledger Livestock Local Markets Maurertown Media Middletown Military & Veterans Moms Mount Jackson New Market Page County Pet of the Week Pets & Animals Politics Progress 2013 Progress 2014 Quicksburg Religion Rockingham County RSW Jail Ryan Cornell School News Shenandoah County Shenandoah Farms Volunteer Fire Department Star Tannery State Stephens City Steven A. Boyce Strasburg Toms Brook Traffic & Transportation Utilities Valley 911 Warren County Weather West Virginia Winchester Woodstock Year in Review

News | Sports | Business | Lifestyle | Obituaries | Opinion | Multimedia| Entertainment | Classifieds
Contact Us | NIE | Place a Classified | Privacy Policy | Comments/Submissions Policy | Subscribe

Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily | nvdaily.com | 152 N. Holliday St., Strasburg, Va. 22657 | (800) 296-5137

2014 Virginia Press Association Grand Sweepstakes Winner
The Best Small Daily Newspaper in Virginia!

nvdaily.com | seeshenandoah.com