Arthritis Concerns In Younger Patients

What Is Arthritis

Arthritis is a condition that involves your joints feeling stiff and painful. Arthritis usually occurs in older people, but it’s possible for younger people to experience arthritis. Arthritis develops from the cartilage cushioning our bones wearing down or otherwise not being able to function properly. Without this cartilage cushioning, joints can swell up and become stiff. This can affect a person’s ability to walk as normal and engage in various everyday activities.

Younger People Getting Arthritis

Usually, it’s middle-aged people who are expected to develop arthritis. When a young adult gets arthritis, it’s known as Early Onset Arthritis. Early onset arthritis occurs in adults under the age of 30. It can be caused by genetics or some type of injury. Someone who is developing early onset arthritis will experience stiffness and pain in their joints while engaging in activities involving moderate exercise. They may feel a burning sensation after moving their joints. The pain might be manageable at first, but will eventually worsen if not treated by a doctor. Stiffness can be experienced if the person hasn’t been up and moving around for a long time.

Early Onset Arthritis

Some symptoms of early onset arthritis, aside from painful and stiff joints, are swelling and redness. A person isn’t able to walk easily and their joints may feel tender. Some ways to treat this arthritis would be to lose weight to reduce any stress or strain on the joints. Yoga can also treat the arthritis, as the stretching will build up muscle and improve flexibility along with mobility. People can talk to their doctor about taking vitamins to treat the arthritis.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of arthritis which can develop in younger people. The chances of rheumatoid arthritis developing in a person younger than 30 is more common than people would think. Women have a much higher chance of developing it than men do (1 in 714 compared to 2,778). Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means it can be genetic. It can have more of an affect on daily living than expected. The pain can get in the way of something a younger person would otherwise have no trouble being able to do. Since more women are affected, many with this arthritis wonder about having kids.

Arthritis In Teens

There is also Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. This is an arthritis that develops in a person younger than 16, and the cause is unknown. Oligo Arthritis is a common type of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, or JIA. It affects the knees and will eventually go away. System Onset is a rare type of JIA, which can affect the spleen and liver. Some of its symptoms are fatigue, losing weight, losing appetite and rashes. Even with multiple kinds of arthritis, young people have similar experiences with different kinds.

Early Symptoms

The symptoms usually start in one joint, whether it’s the ankle, wrist or knee. There are people who exhibit symptoms in multiple joints. Multiple people have even had symptoms in the same joints. The symptoms would be noticeable while engaging in activities such as walking or writing. They would show up after an incident involving a minor injury, being noticeable the following morning. Some of them would go see a doctor because of pain or swelling, but no one even considered that they had arthritis. For some, the pain got worse and spread to other joints. For others, the pain completely moved from one joint to another. Symptoms can slowly start to appear, or suddenly show up overnight. For some kids, arthritis didn’t have any affect on them at all. For others, it’s preventing them from living life as usual.

Types Of JIA

Some people who had Systemic JIA first thought the arthritis was actually cancer. They were diagnosed with the arthritis at a very young age. Some were diagnosed as babies and have no memory of it. Ankylosing spondylitis has been experienced, which has included pain and stiffness that slowly got worse throughout the years. A few people had Psoriatic JIA and experienced itchy scalps aside from the pain. Someone had Enthesitis JIA, which involved different joints swelling up over a period of several months.

If you are experiencing any symptoms shown above that have not been diagnosed, go see your doctor and get some answers. There is help available for arthritis in its many forms.


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