You Are Here: Home > About Arthritis > Arthritis in the News > It’s not just arthritis

It’s not just arthritis

For far too long, people have been told “it’s just arthritis.” 

It’s time to push back against that message and the mistaken believe it isn’t serious.  

Starting with Arthritis Awareness Month in September and going forward we’re getting loud as we join with the six million Canadians who live with the fire of arthritis to say,  “it’s not just arthritis.” 

Kayla, Rachel, and Jillian are standing up to say what it’s really like.  

Kayla Jenkins, 30,  
Toronto, Ont. 

“Axial Spondyloarthritis (axSpA), otherwise known as the bane of my existence, has weaseled its way into every nook and cranny of my body, created space where there was none and has settled in... Living with this disease feels overwhelming and confusing as I balance an enormous amount of gratitude for my body and utter betrayal simultaneously.”  

Rachel Gehue, 25,  
St. John’s, NFLD 

“My independence has been partially lost as my disease spread and got worse, which as I’ve grown up and become an adult, has become one of the things that I struggle with the most. When in a flare, I require help with even the simplest of things... I also often feel like my personal life is pushed aside as I can’t always do the things that my friends and family can." 

Jillian Kuchard, 32,  
Stoney Creek, Ont. 

“When I was first diagnosed, I really struggled with flare-ups and getting on the right medication. It took a while, and it was difficult. Today, things are good, and I’ve been in remission almost the entire time. I work out every day, I go out all the time, am very social - some days I forget I even have arthritis. But I am now at the point of my life where I’ve just gotten married and I want to have children, which means coming off my medications. That part is terrifying.” 

The Arthritis Society is committed to extinguishing not just the falsehood that “it’s just arthritis” but other myths, too. 

  • Myth: Arthritis is a condition developed in old age. 

    • Fact: More than half of Canadians living with arthritis are under 65 and 25,000 young people live with it. 

  • Myth: Arthritis is just aches and pains. 

    • Fact: For many, arthritis causes serious disability including the need for the use of a cane or wheelchair or joint replacement surgery. 

  • Myth: Arthritis is rare. 

    • Fact: With it impacting 1 in 5 Canadians, you likely know a lot more people living with arthritis than you realize.  

Interested in learning more about how you can help fight the fire of arthritis? Visit

Back to News