Raise Awareness for Juvenile Arthritis
When thinking about arthritis, it’s natural to assume it’s a condition of the elderly. Sadly this condition also affects large numbers of children: nearly 50,000 children in the US alone have been diagnosed with a form known as Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (previously called “Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis”). As we continue through the month of July, let’s take a moment to understand a condition that affects so many lives.
Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) does not discriminate; it affects children of all demographics. It falls under the category of autoimmune diseases, where your body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells, in this case, the surfaces and linings of joints.
The most common JIA symptoms include joint swelling, excessive clumsiness, pain, and stiffness. It is not uncommon for symptoms to fade (known as remission) and then worsen or flare. If your child reports these symptoms, contact your doctor or urgent care center for an evaluation right away.
Diagnosing juvenile arthritis isn’t always easy, but there are different ways to test for it, including:
- blood tests
- physical exam findings
- X rays
- reviewing family history
It is imperative to communicate all symptoms and family history to your primary care provider or physician, so that they can consider all the possibilities.
While there is no cure for juvenile arthritis, there are definitely treatments as well as complete remissions, and it is vital to maintain a healthy lifestyle and positive outlook, with ongoing involvement in social and physical activities.
If your child has been making note of any of the conditions of juvenile arthritis, make sure to visit your local Urgent Care Center or primary care physician. And if you’re in Southern California, our Orange County doctors’ offices include Fountain Valley, Costa Mesa, and Woodbridge Walk-In; don’t hesitate to stop by!
Category: Family Health Care
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