Last Updated on July 31, 2020
A chronic illness such as an autoimmune disorder, Crohn’s, fibromyalgia, Lyme, lupus, IBS, Addison’s, and many others can be a truly life-altering condition. If you’re looking for gift ideas for people with chronic illness, you’re in the right place.
It’s great that you’re trying to think carefully about your gift. Chronic conditions are often misunderstood, and so those who suffer from a chronic illness can often feel the same way. A thoughtful gift can be just the trick to cheer them up, help them out, and show how much you care.
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Tips on Chronic Illness Gifts from Those Affected by It
My wife lives with multiple chronic conditions (Addison’s and others), both of which are very trying, elusive, and draining while often remaining “invisible” to the outside world.
We worked on this list together, so take these as suggestions from two people with different yet similar experiences of life with chronic illness – her living and fighting it, myself watching and helping with it.
First, a few tips on gift ideas to avoid.
Chronic Illness Gifts to Avoid
Remember, this person is battling against something that causes negative reactions in their body and also drains their energy. So be sure to stay away from:
- Most food items (since they will often have allergies or specific dietary requirements)
- Cologne or perfume (most have ingredients that will irritate their skin)
- Sporting goods (exercise is difficult, this type of thing can sometimes make them feel like a failure)
- Heavy items (they will want to conserve whatever energy they have)
- Noisy, repetitive, or flashing items (anything that will over-stimulate)
- Things requiring maintenance (lack of energy makes these kinds of things a burden)
We hope that these suggestions inspire you towards generosity towards someone special in your life living with and fighting against a chronic condition.
Ok, let’s take a look at the 27 best gift ideas for people with chronic illness. We’ll start with budget-friendly ideas then work our way up to premium gifts.
Budget-Friendly Gift Ideas for People with Chronic Illness
PRESCRIPTION COFFEE MUG
When a condition is chronic, the prescriptions tend to pile up. Make a good clean joke out of it with this clever pill-bottle-shaped coffee mug.
One of my wife’s favorite gifts. Maintaining circulation and staying warm are important parts of proper health, and these compression socks help with both.
AROMATHERAPY ESSENTIAL OIL DIFFUSER
Chronic conditions can be helped in a small but soothing way through essential oils and aromatherapy.
This essential oil diffuser is one of the most popular and well-reviewed, and a bargain to boot. Even if they already have one, fatigue may make it difficult to transfer from room to room so a second diffuser will be welcome.
DELICIOUS ORGANIC SNACKS & TREATS
People with chronic conditions are often required to have restrictive diets. A healthy diet that avoids a wide range of allergens, irritants, hormones, and pesticides is almost always expensive. So that $6 bag of healthy chips or an $8 chocolate bar or a $12 bakery treat mix can be a huge splurge.
Find out what the person can and can’t have or some of their favorite treats, then visit a natural and organic grocery store and buy those way overpriced treats. They’ll love you for it, and you can still get a nice little gift with a few choice items for about $20, or even a grocery bag full for $50.
No more cold feet! Just pop these slippers into the microwave – yup! – and enjoy the comforting warmth of a new favorite heat source. The Snookiz Microwave Heated Booties are the perfect gift for those who just can’t seem to keep warm.
STRESS RELIEF COLORING BOOK w/ COLORED PENCILS
This set of 50 coloring pencils will be much loved and appreciated by someone who needs to spend a lot of time resting. Not many people will understand just how important rest is to someone with a chronic illness, or how difficult it actually is to get and stay properly rested.
There’s the boredom, the guilt, the pressing needs of the family and the pressure from friends to do things. A gift of coloring pencils plus a lovely adult coloring book with stress-relief patterns will show your friend that you value their need for quality downtime.
OCEAN ESSENTIALS SPA GIFT SET
This lovely indugent spa gift set is just the thing for someone dealing with sensitive skin, chronic pain, and high stress. Made from pure, natural ingredients, this luxury bath set comes in gift-ready packaging.
EZ OFF JAR OPENER
With the extreme fatigue and joint pains that accompany many long-lasting health conditions, a simple act such as opening a jar can become an obstacle. The EZ Off Jar Opener makes opening anything from fingernail polish to 6″ lids a breeze.
WINE BOTTLE OPENER
COPPER MAGNETIC THERAPY BRACELET
Not everyone will feel the positive effects of wearing a Copper Magnetic Therapy Bracelet, but many find that it helps relieve aches and pains.
With so many other medical bills and prescriptions to pay for, someone with a chronic illness may have the extra funds to try this out, especially if they’re skeptical about it. Those who do and feel a difference, however, tend to rave about it!
CAITLIN WHITE SUPER SOFT PLUSH THROW BLANKET
Choose from hot pink, lovely gray, earthy khaki, striped gray, or leopard print. People with chronic conditions will often have a low supply of body heat, and simply can’t have enough soft and cozy blankets.
Any chronic illness gifts that include or come wrapped in a plush snuggly like this will be treasured, remembered, and of course used always.
Mid-Range Gift Ideas for People with Chronic Illness
HANDHELD FULL-BODY ELECTRIC MASSAGER
Pain, stiffness, and soreness often accompany a chronic illness. Massage therapy is very, very much appreciated by someone battling a chronic condition. You can certainly give a gift certificate to a professional masseuse for a single or series of massages. There’s nothing like a good deep-tissue massage done by a professional.
But that can get to be expensive pretty quickly. So for a more enduring yet still affordable gift option, get your friend this handheld electric full-body massager. Includes a variety of settings for head, shoulders, back, legs, and more.
DEEP KNEADING HEAT MASSAGE
Heat and massage therapy in one, and not a bad price either. For help with stress and muscle strain, this massager provides deep-kneading and relaxing heated massages for your neck, back, shoulders, arms, and legs. Great for after sports, exercise, and especially a long workday.
ERGONOMIC GARDEN TOOLS
Gardening is a low-impact form of exercise, ideal for anyone with a chronic condition as a hobby that gets them moving and takes them outside.
The Radius 4-Piece Ergonomic Gardening Tool Set is the perfect gift for a gardening enthusiast, the lightweight tools feature a patented ergonomic Natural Radius Grip which provides extra leverage, reducing hand and wrist stress.
HANDMADE FOX HEAT/COLD BAG
These fox and cat heating bags can also be used for cooling, and are available in a ton of adorable designs! Handmade and filled with rice, these are longer so that you can wrap them around your neck with cotton and wool fabrics. People with chronic conditions are notoriously sensitive to temperature, and may love to receive a fun heating bag.
Bonus gift idea: if this person is already has plenty of heating bags, consider giving them a box of those little hand-warmer packets.
LUXURIOUS BATH PILLOW
Baths are wonderful. Baths with a bath pillow are even better. This will probably be one of the more beloved chronic illness gifts from this list.
Get some organic artisanal bath salts while you’re at it, like these bath salts which were created by someone battling chronic illness and are perfect for people with sensitive skin.
TREATMINT GIFT BOXES
Treatmint gift boxes are specifically designed to give to someone combating major health issues.
Filled with cute supplies such as journals, coffee mugs, note cards, soap, lip balm, and more, these fun boxes are meant to provide a healthy dose of cheer in the midst of a battle against chronic illness.
Choose from several box styles, and send one or a monthly subscription to keep the fun coming.
HYDRO FLASK WATER BOTTLE
Maintaining proper hydration is very important for everyone’s health, and especially so for someone dealing with a chronic condition.
A good-quality Hydro Flask water bottle in a fun color will make a lovely gift. The double-walled vacuum insulation will keep their drinks cool all day long so they don’t have to constantly be getting up for refills.
Personalized tumblers are very popular right now. These keep drinks cool or hot for long periods of time, without the obnoxious outside sweating towards which other types of glasses and mugs are prone.
Proper hydration is very important for everyone, and doubly so for anyone with health issues. These tumblers are perfect for keeping your water ice cold, your green smoothies tasting fresh, and your herbal teas toasty hot. Plus, it’s customized!
FOOT SPA MASSAGER
Pretty much anyone with an enduring health condition will find great benefits from receiving this foot spa massager as a gift.
As we mentioned above, chronic health conditions will often result in the person not being able to retain body heat. Thus, a quality heated throw blanket – comfy, soft, cozy, and always, always warm – is the perfect gift idea.
Premium Gift Ideas for People with Chronic Illness
Here are the premium-quality gift ideas for someone you love who suffers from a chronic condition.
Of course, a check to help with medical bills will often be a huge help, but that might depend on your relationship with them.
However, there are plenty of other nice, helpful, and healing gifts you can give that they may never purchase for themselves. Here are a few ideas.
PORTABLE MASSAGE TABLE
A massage table will be a great gift idea for a person with a chronic condition – especially if you’re willing to come over and give massages!
You will want find out if their spouse or someone close to them is able and willing to give massages on a regular basis. Or you can spring for a mobile masseuse to come for in-home sessions.
In any case, because a massage requires another person, make sure beforehand that this is something that can be used. If you’re the spouse, commit to giving daily massages! Maybe get a book on massage and learn.
Here are a few suggestions:
- The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook: Your Self-Treatment Guide for Pain Relief
- Couple’s Massage Handbook: Deepen Your Relationship with the Healing Power of Touch
- The World’s Best Massage Techniques The Complete Illustrated Guide: Innovative Bodywork Practices From Around the Globe for Pleasure, Relaxation, and Pain Relief
- The Book of Massage: The Complete Step-by-Step Guide to Eastern and Western Technique
FITBIT HEART RATE MONITOR & FITNESS WRISTBAND
The Fitbit with Heart Rate Monitor is a perfect gift idea for someone with a chronic health condition, as it provides continuous, automatic wrist-based heart rate tracking all day long.
Plus it includes all the other functions that make Fitbit a popular smartwatch: time, date, notifications for calls, texts, and calendar items, tracks your workouts and sleep, guided breathing sessions, and more.
DREAMPAD MUSIC RELAXATION PILLOW
The Dreampad Music Relaxation Pillow is truly a unique gift for someone with a chronic illness. Using patented “intrasound” technology, this pillow conducts music into the inner ear via vibrations.
The pillow is supposed to help reduce stress, induce relaxation, and help you achieve and maintain a longer, higher-quality sleep. Includes the music app which comes with sleep-inducing music.
Portable and affordable, this portable sauna is the real deal. Energy efficient and made with premium quality materials, you’ll find that the health benefits of regular use include weight loss, improved skin tone, joint pain relief, increased blood circulation, enhanced immune system, reduced stress and fatigue, and increased overall energy levels.
A really thoughtful gift for someone who fights chronic pain.
HEAT THERAPY HOT TUB
An inflatable hot tub is surprisingly affordable these days, and can provide the incredible benefits of heat therapy to someone with chronic pain.
Here’s the ultimate premium gift idea for people with chronic illness: an Infrared Sauna. These saunas use infrared light combined with heat to provide a wide array of health benefits, which can include detoxification, pain relief (including arthritic), weight loss, improved circulation and heart function, and of course relaxation.
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