Chronic illnesses are long-term health conditions with persistent symptoms that can range from mild discomfort to completely debilitating. The topic of chronic illness is seldom spoken about openly, so you may be surprised just how many individuals (some of which you probably know) are struggling in silence. Nearly 60% of American people are fighting at least one chronic condition, but our healthcare system and society at large does not prioritize supporting those who are struggling. Most people with these conditions are forced to simply live with their pain with no anticipation of relief.
This is especially true for people with vaginas, who have been historically excluded for medical studies and are far less likely than people with penises to receive medical diagnoses. The real kicker is that 70% of people with chronic conditions are people with vaginas. Not only do chronic gynecological conditions like endometriosis, adenomyosis, and uterine fibroids affect 100s of millions (yes, you heard that right) of individuals globally, but people with vaginas are also more likely to have musculoskeletal conditions like osteoporosis, digestive issues, and depression.
According to Momotaro Apotheca Cofounder Lindsay Wynn, "Chronic vaginal health conditions while a pervasive and very serious illness on their own can also be an extremely common comorbidity of other conditions due to the medications we take. things like diabetes, complications from cancer treatment, etc. can exacerbate and even cause issues such as vaginal dryness, atrophy and discomfort that lead to increased infections and severity of things like yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis or UTI's." Long story short, the chronic pain of people with vaginas NEEDS to be prioritized!
So where can chronic pain sufferers go for support...
We'd like to introduce you to Nitika Chopra, a life coach, chronic-illness advocate, and absolute icon! Chopra knows first-hand the frustration of living with chronic conditions as she has lived most of her life with both plaque psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. After trying to find community through various support groups, she found that she left these meetings feeling more discouraged about her condition than before attending. But Chopra was determined to create a healthy and understanding community for herself and others struggling in the same way…so she created Chronicon.
“Even when my conditions shaped the majority of my day, there were still so many other things outside of being sick. People need to take more time to recognize that and I believe this world would be much better for it if they did!”
-Nitika Chopra, Chronicon Founder
Chopra hosted the first Chronicon event in 2019, which was a MAJOR success! The event completely sold out and brought people from all over the country together. After seeing so many people connect over the thing that historically fosters isolation inspired her to take Chronicon to the next level. Chronicon evolved into a virtual community during the pandemic to make membership accessible and safe for everyone. *We stan an inclusive Queen.* But Chopra has changed the game once again by launching the Chronicon Community app, which is a more expansive and active version of the virtual community. The app features multiple events every week, chat boards for members to share their stories, and custom content from Chopra herself as well as experts in the chronic conditions space. Unlike Chopra’s past defeating experiences with community groups, the Chronicon Community app connects people on a deep and personal level, not simply their illness(es).
“I wish people would stop putting folks who have chronic illnesses in a box. It's like when you get a diagnosis the world is so quick to label you as "just a sick person" but we are so much more than that.”
The Chronicon Community sees members past the condition they live with, and instead sees them as human beings who happen to live with a chronic condition(s). This people first and condition(s) second approach helps chronic pain sufferers take control of their own narrative. Because Chopra is beyond done with society's belittling and othering ‘poor them’ attitude. Newsflash: people with chronic conditions deserve to be treated as the complete, complex, and unique human beings they are. Period.
"I think it's so important for people to not suffer in silence and have every aspect of their health considered. Even if it is in fact due to a comorbidity of other aspects of chronic illness. We are here to show up for those people and make sure we can help them find safe and easy solutions that help improve the sexual health and quality of life."
It's for anyone and everyone who is looking to connect with others over shared experiences and ultimately feel less alone. There will be incredible panel discussions touching on everything from how to be chronic illness advocates and how to live life to the fullest to how to foster meaningful relationships. Awwww. There will also be goodie bags from amazing brands in the space, delicious food *obvi*, and a space to connect with a new, beautiful community. The big event will be take place on May 19th in NYC. Get your Chronicon tickets now!
“I do hope that every single person in the room (or who tunes in virtually) leaves that day knowing how valuable they are and that they see that reflected in every single thing they experience at Chronicon. “
Nitika Chopra is the founder of Chronicon, a media and events company, dedicated to elevating the lives of those living with a chronic illness. Nitika was diagnosed with psoriasis at the age of 10 and psoriatic arthritis at the age of 19 and lived over 17 years of her life being defined by her conditions. In 2010 she decided to take all of the lessons her health journey had taught her and use it to help others. Since the start of her entrepreneurial journey Nitika has hosted her own TV talk show on Z Living called Naturally Beautiful, hosted over 40 events with hundreds of guests in attendance and has created dynamic partnerships with over 150 brands in the wellness space.
After 10 years in event creation, Nitika launched Chronicon in the fall of 2019, focused on those living with a chronic illness. Since its launch, Chronicon has expanded online and you can now download the Chronicon app, an accessible online space with inspiration, advocacy, and empowerment for chronically ill folks across the globe. You can also join Chronicon for its first live event since the pandemic, which can be streamed anywhere in the world.
Momotaro Apotheca and its materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. All material on Momotaro Apotheca is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition.