July – Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month

Children frequently complain about aches in their joints, such as the knee, shoulders, or the small joints in the toes and fingers. A variety of issues can cause joint pain in children, but if your child’s joints are painful or swollen for six or more weeks in a row, he or she may have juvenile arthritis. It’s critical never to assume symptoms are temporary, and obtain a proper diagnosis from your child’s pediatrician. Juvenile arthritis is a chronic, long-lasting disease and the most common form of arthritis in children.

Symptoms of Arthritis in Children

Most children with arthritis experience periods when symptoms get better or go away and others when they worsen. The most common signs of juvenile arthritis are joint stiffness, pain, and swelling that doesn’t go away. Usually, it affects the feet, knees, and hands, and is frequently worse in the morning or after napping. Arthritis in children can create eye inflammation and growth issues. It also can cause uneven development of joints and bones. Other symptoms include:

  • Extreme clumsiness
  • Skin rash and high fever
  • Limping in the morning because of stiff knees
  • Swelling in lymph nodes in the neck and other body parts

Early treatment can prevent permanent and serious damage to your child’s joints and enable him to have an active childhood despite suffering from juvenile arthritis.

Treatment Options

Most patients with juvenile diabetes need a mixture of treatments. A team approach is a safe and reliable method for treating juvenile arthritis. A pediatric rheumatologist can manage your child’s care team to ensure he remains physically active. Together they can help your child stay involved in social activities and enjoy an overall high-quality of life. They can direct treatments to relieve pain, maintain joint movement, and reduce swelling. They also try to prevent, identify, and treat problems that result from arthritis. Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month is essential for helping increase awareness of symptoms and treatment options.