Treatment and management
Being diagnosed with arthritis can be a confusing experience. There is a lot of information to take in and many people giving well meaning advice.
At the moment there is no cure for any of the 140 forms of arthritis. However most forms of arthritis can be managed and disease remission for some people is achievable.
The aim of treatment for most forms of arthritis is to stop the disease progression and to manage the symptoms such as pain and fatigue.
The best outcomes occur when you and your health professional team are working together. Your treatment might well consist of medication; exercise; nutrition advice; daily living aids and perhaps employment advice. Team members will include you and other professionals such as your specialist; your GP and perhaps a physiotherapist, dietician or occupational therapist. You can contact an Arthritis Educator phone 0800 663 463 or here for a chance to talk through your treatment plan.
Diagnosis is not usually the start, or the end, of your life with arthritis. There are many things you can do to help yourself live well with your arthritis condition.
Medical information and specialist services
The Health Navigator website provides one place for New Zealanders to find reliable and trustworthy health information and self-care resources. It focuses on promoting clear, consistent messages that enable users to get the information they need at the time they need it. You can find plenty of information here about arthritis.
Healthpages provides detailed information on many NZ Medical Specialists that can assist with treatment and management of many forms of arthritis – see healthpages.co.nz
Healthpages is NZ’s most comprehensive site of health services and professionals, their special interests and the full range of services they provide.
At Arthritis New Zealand we have a number of brochures on all the main types of arthritis from rheumatoid arthritis to ankylosing spondylitis. You can download them below (Acrobat pdf files). These are free of charge.
Forms of Arthritis
Arthritis - Exercises to Keep You Moving
Arthritis New Zealand and Physiotherapy New Zealand have combined their expertise to produce a new exercise guide entitled Arthritis - Exercises to Keep You Moving. The new guide provides step-by-step, illustrated instructions for exercises that will greatly benefit people with arthritis or a rheumatology condition which is affecting their joints or muscles.
- Arthritis - Exercises to Keep You Moving (.pdf, 1.7MB)
At Arthritis New Zealand we have a number of exercise resources available for purchase, including videos, CDs, DVDs, and books. Gentle exercise is vital to managing your arthritis successfully. These resources have been specifically designed for people with arthritis, and are a great way to stay fit and retain mobility.
Let’s Mobilise is an audio exercise programme that provides easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructions. Exercises are split into two sections, the first providing a series of exercise that are a bit more vigorous and are designed to be dome while standing or sitting. The second series is designed to be more gentle, are designed to be done while laying down, and can be done when your joints are painful or if you are having a flare.
Keep Moving is a DVD programme of exercises specifically designed for people with arthritis and help to maintain joint flexibility. Edited and approved by the Rheumatology Unit at Hutt Hospital in Wellington, it provides easy-to-follow exercises and runs for approximately 27 minutes.
Home Based Exercise Programme
Home Based Exercise Programme is a DVD exercise programme to improve strength, flexibility, balance and keep you mobile. The DVD allows you to conduct the entire programme or select specific areas (Warm up, shoulders, legs, neck, and hands and wrists). Instructions are provided in English, Chinese (Mandarin) and Hindi. Members of Arthritis New Zealand receive a 50% discount on the price of all exercise resources. What are you waiting for? Please call (04) 472 1427 to make your order. You can also download and print the Arthritis New Zealand Exercise Resources Order Form by clicking here. Please mail to us at Reception at:
Arthritis New Zealand
PO Box 10-020
The Terrace Wellington, 6143