Depression can increase the pain experienced by those with rheumatoid arthritis.
Depression has been found to worsen pain experienced in rheumatoid arthritis. Rates of depression among rheumatoid arthritis patients is estimated between 13 to 42 percent which reveals how closely associated the two conditions really are. As to why depression is so prevalent in arthritis is that dealing with a chronic condition is stressful which can take a toll on someone’s mental health.
Depression can stem from the acknowledgement that a person with arthritis is unable to perform common functions which they did before or form living in pain. Furthermore patients may feel anxious that they now need to rely on others for support along with worrying about changes that are occurring with their bodies.
How depression worsens arthritis pain
A study looked at how depression can worsen pain in arthritis. The researchers looked at 56 patients with rheumatoid arthritis who completed questionnaires to assess depression and anxiety levels. The researchers followed up with the participants after a year and found a strong association between how patients felt emotionally and the amount of pain they experienced. Essentially, the lower the mood the more pain they felt.
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