Arthritis is typically considered a disorder of the elderly, but people of all ages can be affected. In 2015, more than one-quarter of Vermont adults said they have arthritis. In Vermont, arthritis is more common in those over the age of 65, among women, and among people of lower socio-economic status. Arthritis affects people of all racial and ethnic groups. Arthritis is also more common among adults who are overweight or obese than among those who are normal weight or underweight.
Arthritis is the nation's most common cause of disability. It limits the activities of nearly half of Vermonters with arthritis – preventing them from being able to climb stairs or walk more than short distances. About one-third of Vermonters said their arthritis or joint symptoms affect whether they work, the type of work they do, or the amount of work they do.
Among Vermont adults with arthritis, three-quarters have at least one other chronic condition such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease or obesity. Nationally, arthritis is on the rise as the population ages and obesity rates increase. The cost of medical care related to arthritis, particularly for programs like Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Medicare, as well specialty medical care needed (rheumatologists and orthopedic surgeons) will increase and strain an already overburdened medical system.
Learn more about arthritis and how to manage it. – Centers for Disease Control & Prevention