Actress Claire King talks about her daily battle with Arthritis | Hellenia
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Actress Claire King talks about her daily battle with Arthritis

Posted on 19th Oct 2010 @ 1:46 PM

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As she gets older Claire admits she's becoming more worried about the future and the possibility she may face major surgery one day.

But she is determined it won't stop her living life to the full at the moment.  "I worry about my health deteriorating in the future.  It scares me," Claire says.  "It feels like my whole body is falling apart.  I have elderly parents and they've got problems too, so I want to be around to help them.

"I don't want to be a helpless old woman who can't do anything for anyone because all my joints are falling apart.  That's what motivates me to look after my health."

She first realised something was wrong when she woke up to a throbbing pain in her fingers, three days in a row.  Her GP diagnosed rheumatoid arthritis - an auto immune disease that causes inflammation in the joints. 

Claire, 46, best known for playing superbitch Kim Tate in Emmerdale and Karen Betts in Bad Girls, says the constant pain affected her entire life. 

She said: "I was diagnosed about 13 years ago, not long after I joined Emmerdale.  I had started getting really bad aches in my hands, feet and knees - it felt like I had been hit with a hammer.

My doctor put me on a course of medication and gave me some advice about helpful things to try to ease the pain.  But for a while it just carried on getting worse. 

"I would get up in the morning and be hobbling like an old woman because my joints hurt so much. I struggled to go to work and do the things I love such as horse riding".

There is no cure for this condition at present, but it can be managed with drugs and some simple lifestyle changes.

Claire says finding the right treatment has allowed her to live a normal life - even competing with Brenda Cole in Striclty Come Dancing three years ago. 

"The medication I was prescribed after my diagnosis wasn't very effective and after a few months I was still in a bad way. 

My doctor suggested I try some natural products such as Hellenia's MSM tablets, and Celadrin tablets and joint relief cream.  They were fantastic, particularly the cream, which relieves the pain in about an hour.