Newley Diagnosed with Osteoarthritis!

Kempkat Member Posts: 2
edited 28. Nov 2023, 14:11 in Living with arthritis


After two years of pain on and off I have been newly diagnosed with Osteoarthritis in my knees and more severely in my right hand which seems to have progressed rapidly this last 3 months leaving me with Heberdens nodes and chronic pain. I take Naproxen everyday which takes the edge of as it is much worse without it. I’m only 53 but was told my work is probably the cause of my hands 30 plus years of working with computer systems keyboard and mouse use ! The consultant asked if I had any plans to retire early!

As newly diagnosed I have informed my employer but not sure they really understand. Has anyone got any tips on working with Osteoarthritis? As the pain is getting worse everyday !

I can’t believe how rapidly this has progressed!

Any advice on how to deal with work, pain and living with this condition is very much appreciated!

Thank you !


  • yaz239
    yaz239 Moderator Posts: 51

    Hello @Kempkat and welcome to the community!

    Here you'll hopefully be able to find support and advice from other people living with arthritis. The best way to find people living with a similar condition is to engage on the forum, if you feel comfortable.

    Here's some information on working with arthritis.

    Also, here's some information on osteoarthritis of the hand.

    Best wishes, Yas (Mod)

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

  • Pool10
    Pool10 Member Posts: 4

    Hi, i am in a similar position and now use Dragon software which helps a little as it works for some of the tasks.

  • Trish9556
    Trish9556 Member Posts: 391

    Hi @Kempkat and @Pool10

    I've copied this from another post I commented on earlier to save me typing it out again as it's rather long!

    I have had arthritis in my hands and wrists for a long time with a trapeziectomy in 2020.

    A few tips that I found to work best for me after a lot of pain, trial and error that you might find useful

    Don't waste your money, or time, on creams. We are constantly washing our hands so it's literally pouring money down the drain.

    Hot and cold work well. I find using hot hands or little hotties brilliant. They're air activated packets of loveliness. You can try them as a packet of two from most shops and if they work for you, buy then in bulk from online shops. A lot cheaper that way too. Putting them inside a pair of fingerless gloves enabled me to continue working as a PA using a keyboard all day. They last about 12 hours. Handy also for just squeezing when watching TV. You can get rechargeable ones but these do get extremely hot and you couldn't keep them in your gloves all day. Far too big. When you wash your hands plunge them into a sink of cold water for a couple of minutes. . This improves your circulation in your hands. You could also freeze the expired hot hands/little hotties in a plastic bag in a freezer for the cold option.

    Compression gloves never worked for me. I have a lovely lady who makes me pretty fingerless gloves. You can also get cheapish thermal fingerless gloves from outdoor shops which are very good

    Purchase some therapy putty and balls. They come in different strengths and brilliant for sitting and playing with, kneading, pulling, squeezing and stretching while reading or watching tv. Start with the softest. The balls are egg shaped and perfect for fiddling with. Both of these strengthen your hands

    My kindle became my best friend as I can listen to books instead of having to hold one physically. I much prefer real books but I just can't hold then anymore

    If you must wear a splint, don't wear it all day. You must keep your hands moving, sounds daft but when something hurts we protect it. Don't buy the ones that go halfway up your arm either. Go for one that wraps around your wrist and across the palm and the thumb. Available as left or right. The ones I use are by atesso and are brilliant and reasonably priced. Other makes are available

    Exercises can be as easy as sliding your thumb down your little finger and moving across your fingers. Pick up small things by pinching your fingers - buttons, marbles, coins etc. Alternate this with sliding them to the edge if the table to pick them up. Jigsaws are brilliant therapy! I've spent many sleepless nights doing these when my hands are bad.

    If you have a double sink, place your kettle between them to fill it . Hug a cold kettle to carry from a to b

    Don't carry heavy things or plates of food in one hand. Use both!

    Don't be too embarrassed to get someone to cut your food up. This can be one of the most painful things to do and was hard for me to ask for help with - especially in a restaurant. We are also allowed to drop our table manners to just use a fork when you're having a really bad day.

    If you have to have an injection into your hand ask if it can be guided rather than freehand. The first one I had was so painful I ended up collapsing in pain when I got home. You'll have to wait a bit longer for it but trust me, it's worth it.

    These are just a few suggestions for you to try. Please tag or message me if you need any help or support. I promise to get back to you asap if you

    love n hugs

    Trish xx