Living with arthritis can make it difficult to find a job. You might be finding it hard to work pain free and manage your symptoms. Arthritis is the second most common cause of early retirement (due to ill-health) and with over 100 different types, it can affect anyone at any age (source: Arthritis Australia). But with the right support and the right job- you can keep working.

We KNOW you’re more than your condition. Arthritis won’t stand in the way of you finding a job, but everyone needs a little support every now and again. So we’ve taken the pressure off your job search by rounding up the 5 best jobs for people living with arthritis .

A pair of hands, palms facing the camera demonstrating jobs for people with arthritis

1: Virtual/ Administrative Assistant

If a low impact, low stress or work from home job will help you manage your arthritis symptoms- admin could be the job for you!

There’s a huge range of areas to go into and the option to start at entry level or hone your skills in a particular area. Typical tasks could include, filing, taking calls, booking appointments and more.

2. Accountant

Accounting jobs are great for people who have great attention to detail and love working with numbers. While it does require a degree, there’s huge potential for growth, it’s a stable career and you can forge your own path through specialisation.

Better yet, if you’re dealing with arthritis you might find being off your feet and at an ergonomic workstation does wonders for your symptoms!

3: Freelancer

Whatever your skill base or range, chances are you can do it – freelance! You can work from home, choose your clients and flexible working hours that suit your condition.

You can freelance in a field you already specialise in, but many freelance jobs don’t require any experience at all, and you can get started straight away. These include Data Entry, Proof-reader, and customer Service.

4: Be your own boss/Run your own business

If you like the idea of working from home, choosing your own hours and taking breaks when you need to, then running your own business could be a great option when working with arthritis!

The sky is the limit when it comes to working for yourself, create your own products to sell online, offer your services, teach online classes, or venture further from home with running your own courier, cleaning or gardening business to others!

Working from home is a great job for people with arthritis

5: Training or Management

If you have a background in a role that no longer is suitable like childcare, retail, or healthcare, you might be able to transfer your skills into a training or management role. Working in management or training is a great way to use your existing skills and knowledge to help lead others, without giving up the job or industry you love due to your arthritis symptoms.

These roles tend to include more flexible duties mixed with desk work, and don’t require you to stand for long periods of times or lift heavy things.

If you’re not sure what job is right for you, we can help. Through our free Disability Employment Services, your dedicated Employment Consultant could help you discover jobs that are a good fit for you, and supportive employers.

Jobs to avoid

There can be many factors that can make arthritis symptoms worse, especially when it comes to work. Jobs that are high stress, require repetitive movements or require standing or sitting for long periods of time can have a negative impact.

Depending on your condition and symptoms, jobs to avoid may include truck/bus driver, construction or labourer, childcare, retail, or hospitality. 

Tips to remember

Everyone’s experience working and living with arthritis is different. You may struggle with tasks that others don’t. Along with finding the right job, it’s also important to consider the following steps when managing your symptoms and reducing the impact on your work life:

  • Talk to your doctor: Make sure you follow the advice from your health care team. Let them know of any changes in how you’re going at work so that you can get the best treatment for you and your needs.
  • Moving around: Try not to stay in the same position for too long. If you normally work at a desk, get up and walk regularly. Go to the bathroom, get a drink, or set a timer to take a break, stretch, or start a new activity
  • Modified workspaces: ergonomic chairs, keyboards and mouses may help manage your symptoms by helping you practice good posture and keeping your wrists and hands aligned.

Get the right support

Finding a supportive employer that’s open to discussing your condition can be key to managing your symptoms. A flexible work schedule, options to work from home as well as modified workspaces can all help to make working with arthritis easier.

You don’t have to go it alone. Whether you need help with managing your condition in the workplace, training and upskilling, education, building skills, learning how to search for a job, writing a resume or preparing for interviews, we’ve got you covered.

Ready to find work?

Send us a message and we’ll will be in touch shortly, or better yet, call us now on 1300 139 920

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Image Credit: Pexels, Arthritis Australia.