Rheumatoid arthritis and depression commonly happen together. Although this is understood, individuals with rheumatoid arthritis frequently aren’t screened for depression, so it may not be identified or treated.
Studies show that if depression occurring with rheumatoid arthritis isn’t resolved, the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis can be less efficient.
Can Depression Cause Rheumatoid Arthritis
It’s unclear whether individuals with rheumatoid arthritis have a greater incidence of depression and anxiety as a result of their physical symptoms, or if depression is a symptom caused by the chronic, systemic inflammation of rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Scientists think that people who had depression prior to the beginning of rheumatoid arthritis might be less responsive to their rheumatoid arthritis treatment. More research is needed to determine the specific connection in between all types of arthritis and depression. Left neglected, depression in people with RA may lead to:
- Greater pain.
- Greater risk of heart disease and cardiovascular disease.
- Loss of efficiency at work.
- Increased risk of financial hardship.
- Wear and tear of relationships with family and friends.
- Sexual dysfunction.
What is understood is that individuals who have rheumatoid arthritis and depression that take place together respond much better to treatment when both conditions are dealt with. Although different medications may be recommended to treat rheumatoid arthritis and depression, numerous activities can be helpful in dealing with the physical and psychological results of both conditions, such as:
- Routine workout.
- Stress management techniques.
- Friends and support groups acquainted with the difficulties of both conditions.
Individuals with all types of arthritis are at high risk of depression and anxiety. If you have been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and are feeling depressed or are worried about establishing depression, it’s crucial to speak to your doctor. With medication, support and a personalized plan of action, depression and rheumatoid arthritis are treatable conditions.
There Really Is a Mind-Body Connection
Depression can make living with rheumatoid arthritis much harder. It can even make RA symptoms worse.
Not everyone who has RA ends up being depressed, however depression is considered a “comorbidity” (a disease that takes place together with another) of RA. It can be hard to maintain a warm outlook on life when you’re living with a painful, typically disabling, and incurable disease.
The good news is that depression is both treatable and treatable. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, working to avoid or overcome depression can likewise help improve the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
New RA Treatments Are Effective
Today’s treatments for RA, consisting of many brand-new medications and physical and occupational therapy, are often very effective.
Alone or combined, these treatments go a long way towards relieving the inflammation, tightness, pain, and disability so often caused by RA. In truth, some people even attain remission– the near or total absence of RA symptoms— while undergoing treatment.
How’s Your Sleep Hygiene?
RA pain and depression an make it hard to rest. Attempt these actions for a much better night’s sleep:
- Prevent eating or drinking (particularly caffeinated) after 7 p.m.
- Enjoy a warm bath or shower prior to bed.
- Go to bed and get up at the same hour every day, even on weekends.
- Sleep in a cool, dark, and peaceful space.
- Prevent overstimulation: no TELEVISION, computer system, or other electronic devices in bed.
Eat Better to Feel Better
Eating healthy, wholesome foods benefits RA. In addition, eating mindfully aids with keeping an optimal body weight and helps the body function successfully too. For these reasons, it’s also an essential weapon versus depression.
Prevent sweet treats, beverages, and desserts. Pick fresh fruits, wild rice, and whole grain breads and pastas.
Lean meats like chicken and fish, and soy foods like tofu, offer the proteins your body has to construct and preserve strong, lean muscles. And eating lots of vegetables offers your body the vitamins, minerals, and fiber it needs to function at its best. When you feel great in body and mind, you look great– and vice versa.
Try Fresh Air and a Change of Scenery
In addition to stiff, painful joints, RA can also make you feel ill and tired. With these wearying symptoms, you cannot be blamed for wishing to remain at home. But separating yourself from the world only deepens depression. So does avoiding contact with coworkers, acquaintances, good friends, family, and even strangers.
Humans have to feel that they’re part of the people, and that they’re liked, valued, and looked after. Leave your home as typically as you can, even when you’re not feeling your best. Fresh air and sunlight are renewing. Meeting up with good friends and loved ones is a tried-and-true method to lift your spirits.
Exercise Is Good for RA and Depression
When your RA is flaring and you’re feeling blue, it can take serious willpower to workout. Yet exercise can be a serious remedy for RA and depression.
According to a study released in the journal Arthritis Care and Research, low-impact aerobic workout just an hour a day, 3 days a week, can decrease RA symptoms like pain, fatigue, and depression considerably.
Stretching, swimming, and walking are mild on tender joints. They strengthen muscles, construct stamina, enhance balance, and increase sensations of self-worth and confidence. Even light workout causes a release of endorphins in the brain, relieving pain and raising your state of mind.
Inform Your Family and Friends How You Feel
Nobody should have to sustain the pain caused by RA and depression alone. Both can be crushing and unrelenting. But you’ll be able to manage them much better with help from your friends and family.
Pain, whether it’s physical or mental, is challenging to reveal. You may feel that being stoic and quiet about your pain is somehow much better than “grumbling” about it, particularly when the pain is chronic.
But pain is the body’s signal that something is incorrect. By speaking to your friends and family about your RA pain and how sad it makes you feel, you’re enabling them to assist you take actions to address it.
Talk with Your Doctor
It’s crucial to speak with your doctor or rheumatologist about RA pain and depression. The dose of your RA medications or pain relievers may need to be changed. Or perhaps it’s time to try new medications. Low doses of particular antidepressants can eliminate pain and help make you sleepy adequate to sleep better at night, too.
You likewise can get a recommendation to doctor who focuses on mental health. Talk and cognitive therapy can go a long method toward relieving depression. Antidepressant drugs can be helpful too.