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Health Indicator Report of Arthritis and poor mental health

Having a long-term illness such as arthritis may contribute to stress, depression, and problems with emotions. Adults with arthritis are limited in their everyday activities, have lower employment than those without arthritis, and have other chronic diseases such as diabetes or heart disease.^1^ All of these integrated factors may impact their mental and emotional well-being. In addition, poor mental health can exacerbate functional disabilities, affect adherence to treatment, and be a barrier to self-care. Health care providers can help by screening all adults with arthritis for depression, anxiety, and other emotional problems. Health care providers can also refer those suffering from arthritis and other chronic conditions to a Living Well with Chronic Disease Workshop or exercise classes that help participants learn techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, pain, and isolation and that improve their quality of life. These workshops are not meant to replace existing treatment, but rather to support it. Schedules and locations of the workshops and classes can be found at: [].[[br]] [[br]] ---- 1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2017, March 7). Arthritis in America. Retrieved from []
Women with arthritis are significantly more likely than men with arthritis to report having poor mental health for all age groups. Women aged 18-34 years old with arthritis have the highest reports of poor mental health (62.8 percent). Men aged 18-34, by contrast, had 41.7 percent reporting poor mental health. This decreased to 15.7 percent for females and 9.9 percent for males 65 years and older.

Percentage of Utah adults with diagnosed arthritis reporting seven or more days of poor mental health in the past 30 days by age and sex, 2019-2021 combined years

Data Source

Utah Department of Health and Human Services Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS)

Data Interpretation Issues

The estimates used in this report are based on self-reported data. Such reported information has been shown to be acceptable for surveillance purposes.


Individuals with arthritis who reported having poor mental health defined as seven or more days when their mental health was not good during the past 30 days.


Number of survey respondents who reported doctor-diagnosed arthritis and seven or more days when their mental health was not good in the past 30 days.


Total number of respondents who reported they had some form of arthritis. Responses of "Don't know/Not Sure," "Refused," and those with "Missing" responses were excluded.

Healthy People Objective AOCBC-5:

Reduce the proportion of adults with doctor-diagnosed arthritis who report serious psychological distress
U.S. Target: 6.6 percent

How Are We Doing?

In 2021, adults with arthritis were just as likely to report seven or more days of poor mental health in the past 30 days (25.4 percent) compared to adults without arthritis (25.4 percent; crude rates). Women with arthritis are more likely to report poor mental health (30.6 percent) than men (18.1 percent). Younger persons with arthritis also report poor mental health more often than their older counterparts. Among adults ages 18-34 years old with arthritis, 54.2 percent reported seven or more days of poor mental health compared to 13.3 percent among adults aged 65 and older with arthritis (2019-2021 combined data). The increased risk of poor mental health for women with arthritis compared to men with arthritis is seen across all age groups.

What Is Being Done?

The Healthy Aging Program focuses on measuring the occurrence of arthritis in Utah, increasing arthritis awareness and educational opportunities, and promoting participation in programs proven to help persons with arthritis, pain, and other chronic conditions. Additionally, the Healthy Aging Program supports health systems, clinics, and physicians use strategies and resources that support healthcare provider-patient counseling to increase physical activity and referrals to the evidence-based workshops and exercise classes [ proven] to help patients improve their mental and physical health. Physicians can use the [ Living Well physician portal] to refer patients to the evidence-based classes.

Evidence-based Practices

The Healthy Aging Program (HAP) partners with healthcare, nonprofit, and government organizations across Utah to deliver evidence-based workshops to help people better manage arthritis, pain, and other chronic conditions. Schedules and locations of these workshops can be found at []. The HAP recommends and supports the *Chronic Disease Self-Management Programs, EnhanceFitness, Walk With Ease, Living Well with a Disability, Tai Chi, and the Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program which have been proven to improve the quality of life for people with arthritis and other chronic conditions. *Chronic Disease Self-Management programs include:[[br]] - Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP) as known as Living Well with Chronic Conditions[[br]] - Diabetes Self-Management Program (DSMP) also known as Living Well with Diabetes[[br]] - Chronic Pain Self-Management Program (CPSMP) also known as Living Well with Chronic Pain[[br]] - Tomando Control de su Salud (Spanish CDSMP)[[br]] - Better Choices Better Health (online CDSMP)[[br]] [[br]] For additional information on these programs visit [] or [].

Available Services

To find and register for an evidence-based program in your area please visit:[[br]] [][[br]] or call the Health Resource Line at:[[br]] 1-888-222-2542[[br]] [[br]] Utah Department of Health and Human Services[[br]] Healthy Aging Program[[br]] Bureau of Health Promotion and Prevention[[br]] P.O. Box 142107[[br]] Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-2107[[br]] (801) 538-9458[[br]] [][[br]] [[br]] Arthritis Foundation[[br]] 1355 Peachtree Street, Suite 600[[br]] Atlanta, Georgia 30309[[br]] 1(800) 283-7800[[br]] [[br]] Utah Division of Aging and Adult Services[[br]] Department of Health and Human Services[[br]] 195 North 1950 West[[br]] SLC, Utah 84116[[br]] (801) 538-3910[[br]] [][[br]] [[br]]

Health Program Information

The vision of the Healthy Aging Program is to increase self-management skills and improve the quality of life for all Utahns affected by arthritis and other chronic conditions. The Healthy Aging Program provides technical assistance and coordination to increase awareness, expand reach, and achieve sustainability of evidence-based self-management programs for all Utahns affected by arthritis and other chronic conditions through statewide [ partnerships]. Contact for questions about providing, referring, or increasing physician counseling for patients into evidence-based programs.
Page Content Updated On 01/04/2023, Published on 04/17/2023
The information provided above is from the Utah Department of Health and Human Services IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Tue, 18 June 2024 13:11:45 from Utah Department of Health and Human Services, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Mon, 17 Apr 2023 14:47:52 MDT