8 Mind-Body-Spirit Tips for Living Well on In-Center Dialysis
If you are new to in-center dialysis with DaVita®, you may still be getting used to the routine of going to treatments three days a week. But after a few dialysis treatments, your blood should be cleaner, your anemia should be treated providing you more energy, and you should begin to feel better and be able to get enjoyment from your life.
To achieve quality of life, make sure that you are caring for yourself in all ways. Treating the whole person will put you on the path to living well on in-center dialysis.
Helping your body when you're on in-center dialysis
In order to maintain or improve your health when you're on in-center dialysis, you should follow these steps:
- Keep your dialysis appointments and stay for your entire hemodialysis run to get your blood as clean as possible.
- Visit your doctor for scheduled medical appointments and speak up when you need help.
- Work with your dietitian to determine the best diet for you, and pay attention to your lab work to make adjustments in your diet when necessary. Remember to take prescribed medicines including your phosphorus binders when you eat.
- Exercise or do some sort of physical activity you enjoy. Whether you water your plants, walk around the block or play a game of basketball, finding the right activity for you will help your body keep moving. Talk to your doctor about which activities will be helpful for your body.
Helping your mind when you're on in-center dialysis
In addition to helping your body, diet and exercise help keep your mind sharp and centered. It’s amazing what a good phosphorus level and fresh air can do for your mind. Again, your dietitian will have lots of ideas of how to make your food plan work for you, and your doctor and social worker can provide for more information on exercise opportunities.
You may also want to read up on kidney disease and dialysis to learn all you can about what you are experiencing. Peace of mind comes from knowing you are doing the best for yourself. Education will help you make good decisions about your treatment. You’ll also stimulate your mind by learning new things.
Read the daily paper, keep a journal, send letters to friends, listen to music, visit an art museum or do any other activity that requires thinking. Staying involved in the world around you keeps your mind active.
Helping your spirit when you're on in-center dialysis
Take time for yourself and connect with people who provide you with positive feedback and support. Revisit things that have been uplifting to you in the past. Whether it’s rereading a favorite book, cooking a delicious dinner or calling a beloved friend you haven’t spoken to in awhile, treat yourself to something you enjoy; something that lifts your spirits.
More ideas for living well on in-center dialysis
Now that you are aware of the basics, you may want to look at other areas that may interest you. Here are some ideas to think about:
- Seek out employment or go back to school. Even if it's part time, this can be an activity you look forward to each week.
- Volunteer at an organization you find interesting. Consider volunteering to help, children, the elderly or animals.
- Nobody can help a new dialysis patient quite like another dialysis patient when entering the environment of dialysis. Talk to your facility administrator or social worker to find out if there is a program in your center to greet patients.
If you and your nephrologist decide that HHD is best for your health and lifestyle needs, you’ll see that the many benefits — including independence, flexible diet and ongoing patient support — can help maintain a better quality of life.
DaVita dialysis treatment options
If you want to learn more about dialysis, explore DaVita’s other treatment options:
For more information, call DaVita Guest Services at 1-800-244-0680.
Get Free Kidney-Friendly Cookbooks
Explore Home Dialysis Options
Get to know the many benefits of peritoneal dialysis (PD) and home hemodialysis (HHD).
Learn to manage your kidney health.
Get your questions answered in a no-cost Kidney Smart® class.