The first week of December is Crohn’s & Colitis Awareness Week!
Courtesy of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, there are a few things we can do as rare disease advocates to lift up the Crohn’s disease community during awareness week and all year long.
Let’s get to it!
What is Crohn’s disease?
Crohn’s disease and colitis are the two principal types of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).
IBD is the umbrella term used to describe disorders that involve chronic inflammation of the digestive tract. Let’s dig into Crohn’s, since it is a rare disease.
Crohn’s disease causes inflammation of the digestive tract, which can lead to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition. Inflammation caused by Crohn’s can involve different areas of the digestive tract in different people.
The aforementioned signs and symptoms can range from mild to severe. They usually develop gradually, but sometimes will come on suddenly, without warning. Sometimes, there are periods of time when no signs or symptoms are apparent.
Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation
The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation is a non-profit, volunteer-driven organization dedicated to finding cures and improving the quality of life of children and adults affected by these diseases.
Visit their their awareness week website for a whole array of ways to get involved and help the IBD community be #IBDvisible!
But below are a few handy ideas to get us started.
Make your own infographic
The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation wants to understand the emotions and feelings of patients and caregivers battling with IBD.
Complete the survey and then download and share your personal #myIBD infographic on social media!
Not only does it fulfill research purposes, but generates a great visual that is sure to attract some curious eyes.
Update your Social Media Profile
Calling all social media warriors!
You can customize your social media profile pic to reflect awareness week messaging.
This way, your social media accounts can become walking advertisements.
Put yourself on the map – literally!
Add yourself to the Crohn’s & Colitis Awareness Week map and let the Crohn’s and IBD community know that you are proud to stand with them.
Sometimes just knowing there are many others like you can make the world of difference.
Share Your Story
Stories are the central force of life, when you think about it. Everything has a beginning, middle, and end. Those with rare diseases – and any hardship in life really – have a great story to tell.
Your story has the power to touch the lives of patients and their families living with Crohn’s disease because it helps people feel less alone in their struggles or empowers them to make that next difficult decision.