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User stories: Inflammatory arthritis

About 5 years ago I developed inflammatory arthritis and I take regular meds and have reduced my working hours to 30 per week to help my body to rest.

I have a Plantronics headset, small keyboard and a Roller Mouse Classic 2. I also use Dragon but only when the pain in my hands is bad, so it is hard to remember everything from the last time I used it as the gaps between use can be quite long. I am also lift reliant on anything over two floors which worries me in the current climate even though I have got a mask.

Since my diagnosis I’ve been lucky with the managers that I’ve had. They’ve all been understanding and helped me get the right kit.

The arthritis is worse in my fingers and wrists so on some days I find surfing either the web or Intranet hard if my joints are aching. Also, jumping from one site to another is hard along with typing one thing after another to try and find an answer to a question.

It can be hard speaking to someone in IT if you’ve got an issue with your specific kit as your query has to be answered by someone else and then there’s more delay. I know this happens to a lot of people but to me it can exaggerate what could be a simple problem.

It becomes frustrating being in constant pain when you’re looking for something that was easy to find the other day. Depending on the pain level will dictate what painkillers I use and this can affect my vision along with making me tired.

Asking how your team could support you depends on how much you want to divulge and for me personally it’s all about independence and being self-reliant.

Search engines being better would help as this would lessen keying time. Also having an A-Z for dragon so you could use it as a refresher would be good.