Chronic illness

What is a chronic illness? 

Chronic illnesses are often hidden disabilities. The illness is likely to last at least three months or likely to be a problem at least three times a year. Chronic means that the illness in incurable. Many chronic illnesses have an adverse effect on the quality of life. For example: asthma,  epilepsy, diabetes, myalgia encephalitis (ME), chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), Rheumatoid arthritis, multiple scleroses (MS), intestinal diseases(e.g. Crohns disease), allergies, RSI, whiplash, cancer and cystic fibrosis.

Characteristics

  • Regular visits to GP and hospitalisation
  • Fatigue as result of pain and medication
  • Major change in symptoms: day-to-day or from hour-to-hour
  • Unpredictability of the illness
  • Lack of understanding by others due to the illness being unseen

Possible obstacles 

  • Missing lectures, project groups and other (compulsory) educational activities due to GP appointments or medication
  • Loss of energy and problems with concentrating
  • Restriction in taxability
  • Feelings of loneliness by the lack of understanding of teachers/fellow students due to the illness being unseen
  • Fatigue, which may or may not be caused by medication

 

picture of just three students