Newly diagnosed

Debbie_McG Member Posts: 3
edited 28. Nov 2023, 14:09 in Living with arthritis

Hi everyone,

I've read some of the posts and instantly felt less alone so saying hi myself.

I'm 54 and recently diagnosed, currently taking sulfasalazine and had a couple of steroid injections, and while the tablets help, and the jab is great, I just feel like I'll never be like I was again. My next rheumatology appointment is next month to see if we need to start me on more tablets. Maybe I just need to concentrate on making the best of the new normal?

I used to do a lot of big walks, enjoyed the thinking time and fresh air, but struggling now to do much at all, and just wanted to connect with people who get how I feel.


  • PeterJ
    PeterJ Administrator Posts: 897

    Hello @Debbie_McG and welcome to the community. We are a friendly and supportive group and I hope that that will be your experience as well.

    I understand that you have been recently diagnosed and taking sulfasalazine and some other tablets. I also understand that you want to connect with people who know how you feel. You are definitely in the right place. I would also recommend having a look at our website which contains a lot of useful information about arthritis, treatments and hints and tips. To help I've put a couple of links in below which may help

    Please do keep posting and let us know how you are getting on and I am sure that others will connect with you to share their thoughts and experiences as well.

    With very best wishes

    Peter (moderator)

    Need more help? - call our Helpline on 0800 5200 520 Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm

  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,719

    @Debbie_McG , it's hard to tell anyone what it's going to be like. We might have the same disease but we come at it in different ways, different ages, different backgrounds.

    However, I really think most people are so much better once on a settled meds regime. It's not always the first DMARD tried. Some of us are on two or even three. But, once the disease is under control, you can plan better.

    Personally, I think getting used to a new normal is good. Frankly, we have to do it more than once so adaptability is key. If we can learn to be happy where we must be - even if that's only temporary - that's so much more therapeutic than looking back longingly. Anything we can do for ourselves is good too - a decent diet, reasonable exercise, 'thinking time' and fresh air are all good.

    I 'm sure you'll get the hang of it and find out that life with arthritis might be different but can still be very enjoyable indeed.

    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • Debbie_McG

    Thank you both. I was really feeling a bit down the other day about it, but knowing there is a community there really helps 🥰

    Onwards and upwards 💪

  • Jane68
    Jane68 Member Posts: 30

    Hi Debbie,

    I'm 54 too and recently been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. I've been put on Prednisolone for 6 weeks and then have the choice of 3 drugs. Think I'll go for methotrexate. I'm finding it hard accepting the diagnosis but trying to stay positive.

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,742

    Hi @Debbie_McG , I can relate. I have OA in my hips, (and probably in my knees) which came on very suddenly when it was already very advanced. It put a sudden stop to my favourites pastimes, including walking and other outdoor activities. Even post surgery (new hip), which hasn’t gone smoothly, I'm slowly having to adjust to the possibility that I won’t get these back, well certainly nothing like the level I anticipated going into old age. My mother was still up in the hills in her 70s, my sister and I were gathering new joints in our early 60s.

    But I’m determined to make the best of what my body can still do, I can manage low level walks and take time to enjoy what I see along the way rather than being focussed on the miles and feet of ascent. I’m going to try a different type of kayak that might be easier to get in and out of. If I can’t, I’ll just roll up my trouser legs and go for a paddle instead. I’ve found gentler holidays that are more sightseeing than trekking, and discovered the joy of quirky travel companions rather than fit and healthy trekkers.

    While I’m at a different stage in my journey, I well remember the apearly days, which aren’t so long ago, when I felt my life had come to a full stop. The lovely people on this site helped me so much, and the key life hacks are adapt what you do and/or how you do it, for everything you have to give up, find something else you enjoy to replace it, and be kind to yourself. Listen to your body, and give it the time it needs to get through each day at its own pace. Keep moving and exercising as much as your body will allow, maintaining muscle tone, core strength and flexibility will all help, but if it’s hurting slow it down or stop. Pushing through the pain doesn’t work for arthritis.

    Keep persevering with the treatments, I do hope they work for you soon.

    LM x