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Articles > Words of wisdom for rheumatoid arthritis "Use a pizza paddle to make the bed!"

Words of wisdom for rheumatoid arthritis "Use a pizza paddle to make the bed!"

Diana Bierman

Provided by HealthMonitor

Patient: Cynthia Legendre
Diagnosis: Rheumatoid arthritis
Residence: New Orleans

How it helps me
'Having rheumatoid arthritis [RA] makes it difficult to get my bed made, especially tucking the sheets between the mattress and box springs. It hurts my hands and fingers and sometimes the pain lingers to late morning. I tried using a pizza paddle to make the bed'this trick has worked wonders! The paddle is wooden and has a handle and tapered edge, so I can easily "slide" the sheets in place just like you would slide a pizza in the oven. Making the bed this way has eliminated the pressure on my hands and fingers. One tip: Don't remove the plastic packaging that it comes in'it makes the paddle slide easier!'

Rheumatologist: Madelaine Feldman, MD, who treats Cynthia at her practice, Wilson, Sanders & Feldman, in New Orleans

Why it works
'The morning, when stiffness and swelling are the worst, is one of the hardest times of day for people with RA. So activities done in the AM are naturally more difficult to perform. Making the bed, particularly tucking the sheets under the mattress, can be quite challenging for folks with RA, who have difficulty with both strength and dexterity of their hands. If you use a pizza paddle, you can grab the handle of the paddle with two hands and use the broad flat edge to push the sheets under the mattress. This lessens the need to manipulate your fingers to hold the sheet and manually push it under the mattress.'
Osteoarthritis Rheumatoid Arthritis Joint Stiffness Loss of Strength Pain Arthritis Swelling

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