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User's Manual: Joints

Best and Worst Jobs for People in Pain

On-the-job pain management starts with finding an occupation that meets your needs.
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Contractor/self-employment

Best
Working for yourself has a couple of drawbacks—unsteady pay and lack of health insurance. If you can overcome these issues, self-employment is a great answer for someone with chronic pain. Ashley Boynes Shuck, a 29-year-old from Pittsburgh, Penn., who has rheumatoid arthritis, says she is much healthier since she quit full-time work to be a contractor in public relations and social media.

"I feel so much better physically," she says. "It allows rest and the ability to exercise more and my stress levels are so much less. Working full time was difficult physically and emotionally—if you can do something to make it easier on yourself, you have to do it."

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