Health behaviours and lifestyle factors such as weight management, physical activity, medication adherence and smoking cessation are associated with the progression and impact of osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). While healthcare professionals generally understand the importance of these behavioural and lifestyle factors and make some efforts to address each of them in kind, they do not necessarily view themselves as competent in helping patients to change behaviour, and the interventions typically employed in practice seem to fall short of what is considered best practice in the behaviour change literature. This session will provide an overview of current theories of behaviour change, and outline how the process of behaviour change typically unfolds among patients with arthritis. It will then present research which has examined the makeup of “usual care” for behaviour change among patients with OA and RA, and examine how this stacks up to best practice definitions. Finally, it will provide practical tips and principles that can be implemented to help guide behaviour and lifestyle change efforts in practice. Most importantly, practitioners would do well to adopt a less prescriptive and more patient-centred approach, and to help patients formulate personal change goals, translate their good intentions into specific action plans, and prompt patients to monitor and review their progress towards these self-chosen goals.
Disclosure of Interest None declared