Gift Ideas for Those with Chronic Illnesses

Do you have a friend or loved one who struggles with a chronic illness? The holiday season can already be tough for them, but it’s also a great opportunity to show them you care. Instead of buying them another gift card (that they may not want to hit a crowded mall to use) consider some of these options below.

Non-Slip Socks

Ah, the constant conundrum for people who suffer from conditions like diabetes. Do they walk around in their furry (and totally frictionless) socks in their home, or do they go barefoot and be perpetually cold. Non-slip socks are a great and inexpensive answer to this issue. They can be washed in between wears, meaning that their lifespan might be longer than a furry slipper. Plus, it never hurts to have another pair while the others are in the wash. They don’t take up much space, it’s easy to find sassy or silly ones, and they serve a valiant purpose.

Ice/Heating Packs

With chronic illnesses, it can vary day to day or hour to hour whether heat or cold will be the thing to make achy body parts feel better. Heating packs or pads are great to loosen up muscles — and you can even make them with a few simple items. Ice packs are less DIY, but they can also provide much-needed relief.

No-Prep Food

With family in town, it’s tough to keep to a regular schedule. That can lead to a variety of less than ideal food habits over the holidays. Poor quality food can seriously affect a chronic illness, leading to flare-ups or sleepless nights. Healthy no-prep food is great to alleviate these problems. It can even be something you make that can be stuck in a freezer and pulled out to reheat. Chances are it’ll be the most useful gift they receive!


This one is pretty straightforward. Massages are often welcome for those suffering from joint, muscle or overall body aches and pains. If you opt for a gift certificate instead of scheduling the appointment for them, they may be able to choose the type of massage they receive and the pressure they need to get the most out of it.

Your Time

Does the giftee live far away, like a parent in another state? Sometimes, the best gift is simply showing them that you care. Buy that plane, train or bus ticket and see if you can’t go spend a  long weekend with them. Hanging out in front of the fireplace, sipping hot cocoa or tea and catching up is a wonderful way to show you care.

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Photo by Kira auf der Heide on Unsplash

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