5 tips for cleaning with chronic pain

5 tips for cleaning with chronic pain

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I have two kids and a messy husband so keeping my house clean is a daily battle. Ideally I would have a perfectly clean and organized home because messes stress me out, but the people I live with have different ideas and I’ve learned I have to let some things go. So here’s a few tips for keeping your house clean when you live with chronic pain.

  1. Do a little at a time

Sometimes the mess drives me so insane that I go on a huge cleaning kick and spend hours tackling everything that has been bothering me for weeks. It’s like I have this overwhelming irrational urge to clean my baseboards even though no one cares about my baseboards besides me. These cleaning sprees help me to have a clean house for about 2 minutes, but they wipe me out for days. A better tactic is to do a little at a time. For example, when I’m feeling horrible I will set a timer for 10 minutes. I do what I can with that time frame, but after the timer goes off I have to take a rest. On better pain days I go in increments, 10 minutes of cleaning followed by 10 minutes of rest, repeat.

2. Use the right tools

My new favorite thing is my roomba. I used to have to sweep my floor every single day because my kids are neanderthals. Now I just push a button and my roomba does it for me, it’s like magic. I’m not exaggerating when I say it’s the best thing I’ve ever purchased.

A roomba is not in everyone’s price point, but there are several other tools that can make things easier. Here’s a few suggestions:

3. Decide what rooms are a priority

I don’t have enough energy to keep my entire house clean to my standards so I apply most of my energy to the kitchen and living room. Those are the areas of my house that people see, plus a dirty kitchen just feels gross to me. As much as I would love to have a clean bedroom it rarely happens because it isn’t at the top of my list. The last time I made my bed was probably the year 2000.

4. Delegate as much as possible 

This is a tough one for me because I’m the only one in my house that is bothered by filth. I’m pretty sure my husband has never once cleaned a bathroom, he just doesn’t even notice if its dirty. However, my kids are young and impressionable so I’ve made sure to delegate some cleaning duties to them. They are both in charge of cleaning, dusting, and vacuuming their own rooms as well as their bathroom. I have to put up with a lot of whining, but they’re old enough to take care of their own things. Besides teaching them how to responsible for themselves, it’s another task I can cross off on my to do list.

5. Reduce clutter to make cleaning easier and less overwhelming

Clutter can make a room feel dirty and can make cleaning feel overwhelming. It’s significantly easier to dust and vacuum if you don’t have a ton of stuff to move out of the way first. When I have a room that has too much stuff it’s easy for me to feel discouraged about it ever being clean.  Getting rid of stuff helps to lesson that overwhelming feeling.

Cleaning when you live with chronic pain is never going to be easy, and you’ll probably never be able to clean as much as you would like. However, hopefully these suggestions will make things a little easier.

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11 thoughts on “5 tips for cleaning with chronic pain

  1. Thank you so much for participating in our second link up party at The Unbroken Smile. I love your article and I’m sure our readers will love it too. Thanks so much for sharing! ((Gentle Hugs))

  2. Spot on with how a messy physical space causes mental stress! Still trying to find ways to work around that but decluttering is definitely very important…even if it’s just putting away the ironing board and tying the curtains up! Thanks for the tool suggestions too!

  3. i knowhow you all feel. We have carpets all around, so we bought an upright mini Dyson Hoover it’s lightweight and only me that uses it. I have a grabber that helps me pick up things which is a god send, I have a stool in the kitchen to allow me to sit and maybe help out with some cooking or some preparation for dinner or doing dishes. I m notorious for lying in severe pain for 1-2weeks then trying to do so much but end up on the couch in agony after an hour, back to lying about and resting for 1-2weeks. I’m might try a few if the other ideas out, but so far my priority is living room and kitchen my husband does the bathroom.

  4. Can you tell me the brands of these items you use? I have Psoriatic Arthritis and Psoriasis. It’s really bad on my feet and ankles. I would love to have these products to help. Thank you!

    1. For the products I listed I’ve linked to the amazon pages of the ones I use. I pretty much buy everything from Amazon these days, but I’m sure the same products can be found in the store. The only one I haven’t tried personally is the steam mop because it’s still on my wishlist =)

  5. Thank you so much for sharing these tips. I have been unable to work now for almost one year. I had a very demanding career that I desperately miss and my home was cleaner when I worked 12+ hours a day. I have 2 dogs and 2 cats my husband is messy as well. He cooks most nights for me after he gets home from work.he leaves me a huge mess but I feel so guilty that he has to cook. I feel guilty when he comes home to a messy house when I am now here all day. I am so behind on house work I get up early feeling good and I will make myself sick because I don’t know where to start. I am trying to declutter and organize to make things easier but I will over do and each week I end up further behind on the day to day items that I don’t ever get anything started in the xtra factor. It is so frustrating and I feel like I am never going to get there. Glad I am not alone

    1. I know exactly how you feel. It seems like I should be able to keep up with the mess since I’m usually home, but it’s not that easy. Once I address one part of the mess, that means I don’t have any energy for the other parts!

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