Heres my second question... I have been trying/struggling to manage my RA for over 14 years. In that time I have continued to work in special education and in a mainstream high school. I have rarely taken time off and never been seen by occupational health, my choice as I didn't want to face up to the fact that I have a chronic disease. My school have been good at making reasonable adjusments and I have managed qite well until recently.
I have had to give up almost all my social life just to enable me to work. I also have problems with extreme exhaustion and am unable to do as much exercise as I feel I need to improve my joints and mobility because of this.
I take methotrexate and steroids and pain relief and a host of other things to counteract the sideffects!
I am always stiff with some degree of pain and am lucky to not have deformities as yet. I have flare ups like we all do and they can come on so quickly. I have to judge when to go home before they get acute.
I cut work down to 4 days a week last year which gave me one day at the weekend when I felt OK.
My job is stressful and stress is my trigger for flare ups. I was thinking about giving up work and downsizing my house to give me money to live on till I got my pension, but I feel I should see if I qualify for retirement on medical grounds, then I could stay in my home.
Anyone got any advice?