Depression with osteoarthritis

I have said on here before that I have osteoarthritis in my left knee and now my right knee is bad. Now that both my knees are not good this is making me very depressed. I’m getting really worried how bad my mobility will get. This condition is affecting my everyday life and putting me off doing more things because of my discomfort. Just walking I am in discomfort. When I stand up from sitting my legs are stiff and I can’t walk straight away. I would love to go for long walks but find it too uncomfortable. I do use a walking stick but not happy about using this. I’m 58 years old but feel older for my age because of this condition. I really feel that this condition is restricting my life and that is what is making me so depressed.


  • Ellen
    Ellen Moderator Posts: 1,485

    Good morning @catwoman

    The subject of mental health and Arthritis comes up regularly so you are absolutely not alone feeling low.

    Do take a look at this it might help:

    You could also ring our Helpline of it would help to talk to voice?

    Living with a long term health condition it is understandable that many of us struggle with low mood and depression. Quite a few people here do take low dose antidepressants to help.

    Sending my very best wishes


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

  • jonr
    jonr Member Posts: 356

    Hello @catwoman,

    I totally understand how you are feeling as I'm certain many other community members do.

    At times when I've felt low it's nearly always been the practical things which have helped me find a way forward. Lets start with your stick. I know you don't want one but the support and confidence one might give to enable you to walk could be worth it. Me? I prefer swiss walking poles. Having 2 spreads my weight more evenly, they don't sink in grass and I look like a pro walker using them - loads to buy cheaply in Mountain Warehouse.

    I also use elasticated knee supports if I'm doing a big walk or a hike, they help my stability.

    Ultimately, I think the answer is effective pain relief - get that sorted and you'll be more mobile and able to do the physio and exercise so beneficial to joint health.


  • Hello @catwoman

    For many years I have also suffered with arthritis all over my body but especially in my knees and hips. I stand for a few seconds when I first stand just to get my legs used to me standing then I set off walking. I use either my walking sticks or crutches or on a bad day my rollaster. On very bad days my wheelchair. As a younger person,in my 40's, I kept getting frustrated with myself at first and took it out on every one around me but I have now come to accept my disability. I find it's a fine line with exercising and resting. I am on 3 types of medication, paracetamol, tramadol and naproxen. I tend to use more in the winter than summer. My mental health suffered at first but now I have figured out ways to get around my arthritis. When cooking I use a perch stool so my legs are not taking my full weight, I have a draw sheet on my bed and chair so if a accident occurs as I cannot move fast enough to the bathroom. I got myself a big bag to carry spare clothing and medication.I plan well in advanced for days out find out where benches are and toilets. I also look if the place I am visiting has a shopmobility scooter so I can get around. I have also found it is good for my mental health to just get out.even just to the park or shop. Look at groups you can join so you can just have a chat. I found loneliness was my problem at first and I become self loathing but now I am more active and joined a few groups that, do not require loads of weight bearing on my legs, I am so much more happy. Even a chat about anything other than arthritis can help. I do hope you find your good place soon Catwomen. If I can do it I am sure you can too.

  • Angie21
    Angie21 Member Posts: 3

    Hello @catwoman

    I sympathise with you completely . I had a knee replacement in June and was recovering well until my hip started hurting and have since been told I need a hip replacement. It has affected my new knee because of the pain in the hip and the way I am now walking .I use crutches on a bad day but I agree walking poles maybe a help.The depression that seems to come with so much pain and helplessness is something I have suffered and decided to get some physio although painful mentally I feel it’s helping me and helping I hope with the stiffness.


  • CarylW
    CarylW Moderator Posts: 233

    Hello @ACarMidnight and @Angie21

    I hope @catwoman won't mind me replying to you on her post, to welcome you both to the online community. We are a friendly group who try and help each other with information and support, and thank you for doing just that!

    You can use this forum to ask for help as well as giving it, and you may find that information on our website can help as well. If you click on the Versus Arthritis box at the top left of this page and then find the magnifying glass icon to search.

    Please do keep posting and interacting with posts on here. We really enjoy getting to know you.

    Best wishes


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

  • Mr_Neil
    Mr_Neil Member Posts: 3

    Dealing with chronic pain robs a person of a normal life. I have also found that physio, although painful at the beginning can be very beneficial, long term. I've been dealing with arthritis pain for 37 years, after being diagnosed with Perthes disease at 15 yrs. old.

  • Poppyjane
    Poppyjane Moderator Posts: 668

    Hello @Mr_Neil welcome to the online community

    Thank you for your posts. Apologies to @catwoman for replying on your thread, you have obviously resonated with numbers of our members considering the new posts that have replied to yours.

    Long term pain and how we cope with it is a recurring theme in many posts as is the link this has to our mental health. I attach a link to a recent member who has had perthes' disease since childhood.

    Also a link to pain management for hips, I expect having seen a physio you are familiar with these exercises but members often find the online activity helps them feel more connected to others.

    We hope that it will not be too long before you get a date for your THR surgery, let us know how you get on . There are lots of really interesting threads about THR so do look them up.

    Take care


    If it would be helpful to talk to someone ring the Helpline 0800 5200 520

    Monday - Friday 9.00a.m. - 6.00p.m.

  • Baloo
    Baloo Member Posts: 358

    @catwoman today I went to the dentist, but knowing my knees and ankles are not up to it, I am probably down to 0.5mph. I took a day off work and allowed all day to complete the task, plus whatever else needed doing. I spent some of the day learning how to use interdental brushes. It's 4am. The house is a mess of discarded clothes. I am done and going to bed.

    I find its quite helpful to know my activity will spill over, so I have allowed the rest of the weekend to catch up on the clothes business. Finishing anything in short timescales is just not on the agenda.