What you should know about internal disorder and chronic disease
１．What you should know about internal disorders and chronic disease
The term ‘internal disorder’ refers to a disorder that affects one of the body’s internal organs. There are seven specific internal disorders defined by the Act on the Welfare of Physically Disabled Persons: heart disorders, kidney disorders, respiratory disorders, bladder and rectal disorders, intestinal disorders, immunological disorders due to HIV, and liver disorders. These disorders often resulted in progressive diseases, which meansthose suffering from them may feel worried about their changing symptoms, and require ongoing medical care. This aspect is not included in the definition of internal disorders, but this similar situation can be classified for patients suffering from chronic diseases that require a lengthy treatment period.
Both internal disorders and chronic diseases often involve disorders or symptoms that are not visuallyapparent, but affectingrestrictions or the limitation to do some activitiesduring their study or work, which meansthey requires the understanding and support of the people around them.
２．When interacting with a person who has an internal disorder or chronic disease
People with internal disorders or chronic diseases experience a wide variety of symptoms, so the key points to remember when interacting with a sufferer is very dependent on each individual case. Below we have listed some suggestions that may help when interacting with people suffering from some of the more common internal disorders and chronic diseases below.
■Alleviate their physical burden
People may have reduced mobility or physical fitness, so it is important to be aware of limiting their physical stress. For example, ask them to sit down on a chair while having a conversation, and make sure the route you are taking includes elevators or escalators. Such consideration is needed to minimized the physical burden on these sufferers in various situations.
■Correctly understand their situation while protecting their privacy
Since the symptoms of people with internal disorders and chronic diseases can be vary greatly, it is important to first have the sufferer him or herself explain the condition to you, and correctly understand their situation. You should then talk with the sufferer about the type of support they require. Care must also be taken to respect the sufferer’s privacy.
■Spread awareness of the enquiry counter
Because their disorders or diseases are not obvious externally, people with internal disorders or chronic diseases may feel reluctant to speak up about the difficulties or trouble they experience. It is uncommon for them to seek help after a problem with their study or work has occurred, such as having long periods of absence due to a seizure or period of un-wellness. That is why it is important to spread awareness of the support enquiry counter, and create an environment that makes it easy for them to access the support they need.