Charlotte\u2019s story \u2013 dealing with arthritis in her thirties\r\n\r\n\u201cWhen I was first diagnosed with arthritis at age 36, it was strangely a relief. I had a name for my condition, so I could go away and research it. However, reading about it can be quite depressing because arthritis is a long-term condition that has no cure.\r\n\r\n\u201cWhen the pain and fatigue associated with arthritis was at its height, it was very hard knowing you have to live with the condition for the rest of your life. \r\n\r\n\u201cOn bad days, I remember thinking the pain was unbearable. The pain in my right shoulder was so severe, it was like having my arm sawn off with a blunt saw. And the fatigue, which often gets forgotten about, is like being run over by a bus and then being asked to get up again, so it\u2019s tough.\r\n\r\n\u201cYou sort of grieve for the person that you lost, because you realise that you can\u2019t do the things you used to be able to do. \r\n\r\n\u201cThat all changed when I joined Arthritis Action in 2014. They\u2019re all about empowerment. They gave me everything I need to deal with the pain myself, with lots of help on exercise, emotional wellbeing and diet. There\u2019s also the support side of it. They gave me the opportunity to meet others, and it\u2019s really nice to have the outlet to talk to like-minded people, join groups or pick up the phone and talk to the team who can point me in the right direction.\r\n\r\n\u201cArthritis Action has changed my life. Now I can do the things that I used to do and have come out of the other end.\u201d\r\nThe life-changing impact of arthritis\r\nArthritis affects one in six people in the UK, and can impact people at any age. In fact, around 15,000 children and young people in the UK have arthritis.\r\n\r\nThink of the people in your life: mum, dad, friends and colleagues\u2026 how many do you think have arthritis? How many talk about it? It\u2019s the pain in the knees as you walk down the stairs, or in your fingers as you try and grip a spoon to stir your tea. You can ignore it to a point as it\u2019s within your pain-threshold, but there comes a point when it starts to affect your daily life. You no longer take the stairs but the lift\u2026 and the pain gets progressively worse. What do you do then?\r\nA holistic approach to managing arthritis\r\nTraditional treatment extends to painkillers that deal with the effects, but they don\u2019t address the causes. Arthritis Action was founded in 1942 by Charles de Coti-Marsh, who developed a self-help programme based on a combination of diet and therapy. Now, nearly 80 years later, we are continuing our tradition of helping people with arthritis enjoy a more active life with less pain.\r\n\r\nNoha Al Afifi, Director of Marketing and Communications at Arthritis Action, says: \u201cBoth my parents have arthritis, so I know first-hand that the support we offer people is invaluable. \r\n\r\n\u201cWe are the only UK charity that gives hands-on, practical help: we offer healthy eating and nutritional advice; access to clinical appointments with our network of osteopaths, physiotherapists, and acupuncturists; exercise tips; and pain management techniques. \r\n\r\n\u201cAlthough over 10 million people have arthritis in the UK, we know that everyone is unique in the way they manage their symptoms. This is why we tailor our self-management approach to meet individual needs.\u201d\r\n\r\n \r\nThe importance of gifts in Wills\r\nIt\u2019s difficult to see loved ones in pain, going about their everyday lives, knowing that you may well face the same future. The gifts in Wills we receive allow us to give people the tools to manage their arthritis and lead positive lives.\r\n\r\nThe legacy our supporters choose to give is one of hope \u2013 giving people with arthritis the chance to make the most of the time they have, despite the pain.\r\nFind out more\r\nFind out what you should consider when making a Will.\r\n\r\nFind out how to leave a gift in your Will to charity.\r\n\r\nFor more information about Arthritis Action and leaving a gift in your Will, please contact Iza Seabrook, Fundraising Manager at Arthritis Action, on 0203 781 7120 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.