Ted Ziegler is one of a growing number of men in the United States who provide unpaid care for family members – and he does it while coping with fibromyalgia and spinal stenosis, a painful narrowing of the spinal canal. Ted, 42, spends several hours a day taking care of his mother, 83, who has lost some mobility due to knee osteoarthritis (OA). He also does the cleaning, cooking and other household chores, as well as tend to toddler son, Teddy, to ease the burden on his wife, Jenn, who has rheumatoid arthritis and OA among other conditions.
So how does Ted, who receives disability compensation, cope when joint pain and fatigue are overwhelming? “I just do it,” he says. “It’s pretty stressful.”
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