MAKING THE BEST OUT OF LIVING WITH RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS
My name is Carolyn Kosanouvong-Walker and I reside in California. I’ve been living with rheumatoid arthritis for 43 years now and was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (the terminology has been changed to juvenile arthritis) at the young age of 3 years old.
My family is an immigrant from Southeast Asia. I was born in the country of Laos and at the time of my diagnosis, my family was still living in Laos. During that time, the doctors didn’t know the protocol to treat children with arthritis. I didn’t receive any formal treatment until my family came to the United States in 1979. I grew up in a generation where effective drug treatments such as biologics were not available and therefore, the disease quickly affected most joints in my body and lead to permanent joint damages.
I’ve had bilateral total hip replacements and bilateral total knee replacements. I also have my left wrist fused and an elbow surgery. Now in my middle age, I was given a secondary diagnosis of osteoarthritis. Chronic pain is part of my everyday life and I continue to have other joint issues, but I make the best of what I’ve been given.
My personal journey with this disease allows me to work with others in the arthritis community. I am currently a trained Volunteer of the Arthritis Foundation and lead an Arthritis Support Network for the Fresno County area. I’ve been a part of this peer-led Arthritis Support Network for almost 3 years now and enjoy connecting, educating, and empowering adults who live with arthritis and its related rheumatic diseases.
CAROLYN’S JOURNEY WITH doTERRA
Prior to starting my journey with essential oils, I didn’t know anyone who was using these alternative supplements to help with pain management or sleep difficulties. In 2016, I met a doTERRA Wellness Advocate in my city who helped me get started on customizing essential oils for my specific needs. As with any new supplements, I discussed this matter with my physician prior to using them.
My physician explained that as long as it didn’t counteract with my prescribed medications, I could use them. Not only am I a personal user of doTERRA essential oils, I also help anyone interested in trying these Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade essential oils and products in my capacity as a Wellness Advocate. I educate and provide the appropriate tools and resources to help an individual who is ready to incorporate these essential oils in his or her life.
There are various ways to use doTERRA essential oils and they are safe for topical application, aromatically diffused, and taken internally by adding to beverage, food, or in a veggie capsule. I can’t speak for other essential oil brands out there since there are many in the market these days. What I can say is that I fully trust doTERRA essentials oils due to its safety, high quality, and efficacy. I have a daily routine that I practice from morning, afternoon, and night with the oils to help alleviate pain, boost my immune system, to help me stay grounded and focused, to aid in relaxation and sleep at night, and nutritional supplement that I add to my smoothies for overall wellness.
We all know that it’s not easy living with arthritis and when pain takes over, we just want to do what it takes to get rid of the pain. Besides taking my prescribed and over-the-counter pain medications, I use my essential oils and products as alternative supplements. For me, I’ve made a decision to decrease the amount of toxins that I put in my body and in my home environment, especially as I age and it’s more important than ever now. This is why DoTERRA essential oils and nutritional supplements are an integral part of my daily life and I don’t know what I would do without them!
What I love about DoTERRA essential oils and products is that they are developed and tested by scientists who work in the company’s laboratory. As a Wellness Advocate, I participate in the educational webinars provided to me by the company and continue learning by doing my personal research through publications written by experts in the area of aromatherapy and essential oils.
When I was at the 2017 doTERRA Global Convention last September, I learned so much from the physicians and medical experts who presented information about how they discuss the topic of essential oils with their patients along with their suggestions on usage.
My disclaimer is that, what works for me may not work for another person. Just like the medications that we take to treat our arthritis symptoms, a specific medication may work for one person and may not work on another. My suggestion is that you try these essential oil blends. If you don’t get any relief after a few days, then stop using them. For safe storage of essential oils in the home, it’s best to store them in a dark and cool area away from direct sunlight. The sun may potentially destroy the chemistry of essential oils. When traveling, it’s safe to carry the roller bottles in your purse or tote bag.
Here are several pain relief blends for roller bottles that I suggest. I use them myself and have found them to be effective in relieving pain.
- Joint & Arthritis Pain Relief: In a 10 mL glass roller bottle, add the following essential oils, 4 drops Juniper Berry, 3 drops Marjoram, 3 drops Roman Chamomile, 3 drops Ginger, and 3 drops Siberian Fir. Then top the rest of the bottle with doTERRA’s Fractionated Coconut Oil. Apply on affected areas and use as needed at the onset of pain.
- Pain Away Roll-On: This blend was developed by Dr. Eric Zielinski. I took an Essential Oil Revolution training webinar from him in 2016. In a 10 mL glass roller bottle, add the following essential oils, 4 drops Copaiba, 3 drops Marjoram, 3 drops Basil, and 2 drops Frankincense. Then top the rest of the bottle with Fractionated Coconut Oil or Jojoba oil. Shake well before using so that the oils will combine. These 2 carrier oils absorb quickly and work well. Apply over problem areas up to 2x daily at the onset of pain.
- Headache Blend: In a 5 mL glass roller bottle, combine the following oils and fill the bottle with Fractionated Coconut Oil, 7 drops Peppermint, 5 drops Lavender, 5 drops Frankincense. Apply to the temples and the back of the neck as needed every 30 minutes.
- Essential Oil Allergy Relief: It’s spring and with the blossoms and pollen in the air, most of us may be experiencing seasonal threats and exhibit symptoms of watery and itchy eyes, cough, and runny nose. Some may even have sinus issues. This blend was developed by Dr. Zielinski. In a 10 mL glass roller bottle, add the following essential oils, 3 drops Peppermint, 2 drops lavender, and 2 drops Lemon or Eucalyptus. Then fill the rest of the bottle with carrier oil like Fractionated Coconut Oil and shake well before use. Roll-on and rub on the back of the neck and on the chest 2x daily or as needed.
- Sleep Tight Roller Blend: In a 10 mL glass roller bottle, add these essential oils, – 3 drops Vetiver, 5 drops Cedarwood, and 5 drops Lavender. Fill the rest of the bottle with Fractionated Coconut Oil. Apply to the bottoms of feet or the back of neck. (See picture for example)