Making Your Dialysis Treatments Come Alive and Less of a Chore

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As a dialysis patient your "job" is to become your own expert and conduct successful treatments. Research shows that workers who enjoy their jobs are more engaged in their activities while on the clock, leading to higher levels of creativity, better performance and a greater overall sense of accomplishment. Though dialysis will never be enjoyable or thrilling it does not have to be complete drudgery if you are able to find ways to make the most of your time during treatments. While an at-home treatment (peritoneal dialysis or home hemodialysis) will allow you to control your schedule which may make it easier, you will still have to do your job and thus find ways to productively pass time while on dialysis.

Here are some suggestions on how to spice up your dialysis treatments:

Bring along a portable DVD, CD or MP3 player to listen to your favorite movies, tunes or books on tape. You can borrow books on tape, music or even DVDs from your local library, often for free. Consider playing an electronic game such as solitaire or tetris which can be downloaded to your smartphone, computer or tablet. Regardless of your choice you should turn your sound off or use headphones to avoid disturbing the people around you.

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Read the bestseller everyone is talking about, your favorite magazine or the newspaper. This will help you ensure that your mind remains sharp and that you are aware of contemporary events. Also, completing a crossword puzzle or word search will keep your mind agile. Remember that maintaining an agile mind positively impacts your health.

Take along a sketchbook for drawing and journaling or write a blog post for There is benefit in using dialysis time to write letters and cards to people you care about. If you can use a computer or cell phone in your facility, you could email, call or text message love ones. You can even write letters to your legislators to support quality care for people on dialysis.

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Complete a task that you normally have responsibility for in the family such as your bills with your checkbook and stamps. Write out checks to pay your bills and you will be surprised that by the time your dialysis treatment is finished so is that duty.

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Pick up that new interest you have always wanted to learn more about by reading a book, workbook, or practice materials while on dialysis. You might learn more about how to improve your health outcomes as a dialysis patient, work toward a degree, or simply attempt to learn a foreign language. This maybe a perfect opportunity to learn about the transplant process or other treatment modalities which can be extremely complicated if not properly researched. Talk with your care team about what you will need to do, and it may benefit you to take time on dialysis to read the information they give you as well as do your own investigation.

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Whether you read a book, watch television or listen to music, you can choose how you spend your time dialyzing. However, encourages you to spend the time in an enjoyable productive way, according to how you feel. The fact is, though your treatment may be long and seem arduous, you still spend countless hours of your life on dialysis, so finding ways to best use your time will improve the quality of a major part of your life and make your "job" less of a chore.

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Reference:  "What Can I Do During Dialysis?" Kidney Firends