Living with RA
Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: September 2013. | Last updated: August 2023
Living with RA can be a difficult challenge. You can find a series of articles that can help you living with rheumatoid arthritis.
RA & Health Insurance
Obtaining health insurance that includes hospitalization, major medical coverage, and prescription benefits is essential for any person with a disabling health condition, such as RA, because of the lifetime requirements for a variety of medical and allied health needs and the considerable cost associated with those needs.
RA in the Workplace
Because work is so important to us, it can be particularly difficult when the symptoms of RA interfere with our ability to carry out work responsibilities. One study estimated that as many as one-third of people with RA are forced to stop working within 10 years of being diagnosed.
Traveling with RA
Travel is associated with both physical and emotional stress that can be magnified if you have a condition like RA. Physical challenges such as lifting and carrying heavy luggage, spending extended periods of time on your feet, and sitting in cramped quarters (whether in a plane, car, or bus) can be particularly difficult if you have joint pain, inflammation, weakness, fatigue, or other symptoms common in RA.
RA & Sleep
Many individuals with arthritis complain of difficulty sleeping. According to the 2003 Sleep in America Survey, conducted by the National Sleep Foundation, three-quarters of adults over the age of 55 years with some type of arthritis reported sleep problems. These included not getting enough sleep (less than 6 hours per night), feeling sleepy during the daytime hours, poor quality of sleep, insomnia, or some other diagnosable sleep disorder.
Managing Emotional Problems & Stress
Living with the challenges of a chronic disease like RA can be stressful and emotionally challenging. It is no wonder that studies have found that patients with RA, particularly those with active disease, are at high risk for depression and anxiety.