Arthritis: Take Care of Your Mental Health

It can be tough to live with a long-lasting condition like osteoarthritis. Joint pain and other symptoms can affect how well you can do work, everyday tasks, and things you enjoy. That may make you feel stressed, sad, or angry.

But there are many steps you can take that can make living with arthritis easier. Make sure you give your emotional health as much as care and attention as your physical symptoms.

Effects of Arthritis

With arthritis, pain and fatigue may become a regular part of your day. The disease can also affect how your body looks, which may make you feel self-conscious. Over time, those kinds of symptoms can make you feel frustrated, angry, anxious, and, at times, depressed.

On the other hand, depression or anxiety about your condition can make your arthritis symptoms worse.

How Can I Make My Life Better With Arthritis?

The most important step you can take is to get help as soon as you feel your arthritis is taking a toll on your mental health. There are many kinds of support that can help you find ways to manage the stress of living with a condition like arthritis. That will help you keep a positive physical, emotional, and spiritual outlook on life.

Many types of help are available for people with long-term conditions like arthritis. A doctor or therapist can design a treatment plan to meet your specific needs and help you feel more in control of your life.

Support groups are also great places to learn new ways of dealing with your illness. You can talk about problems you’re facing with others and get their advice and understanding. They can also offer tips that have helped them deal with similar issues. Plus, it feels good to know that you’re not alone.

On the other hand, you may feel more comfortable talking about some issues in a one-on-one atmosphere. In individual counseling, you can talk about sensitive or private feelings you have about your illness and how it affects your lifestyle and relationships.

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What If I Am Feeling Depressed?

The most important thing to do is to reach out for help as soon as you feel the disease is affecting your emotional health. If you feel depressed or that arthritis is too much to handle, talk to a mental health professional. He can design a treatment plan to help with your specific troubles. You might be able to take medications for a little while to ease depression and lift your mood.

Everyone deserves to live the best life they can and feel in control of their health. Make sure you take care of your mental health while you manage the symptoms of arthritis.

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Michael W. Smith, MD on December 18, 2017

Sources

SOURCE:

Arthritis Foundation.

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