Arthritis does not discriminate by age, a little-known fact for many parents.
Childhood arthritis can affect kids from six months to 16 years old, according to KidsHealth.org. Symptoms of childhood arthritis include swollen joints that stay inflamed for weeks. Children may feel stiffness in their neck or hips, or have a morning limp. Rashes may suddenly appear and disappear. High fevers may spike in the evening and then suddenly disappear.
“Children with arthritis may lose their appetite due to joint pain or arthritis medication,” said Dr. Carl W. Hastings, chief scientific officer of Reliv International, Inc. “Nutritional problems related to childhood arthritis can include weight loss and slow growth,” he added.
Your pediatrician may diagnose juvenile rheumatoid arthritis or send you to a pediatric rheumatologist for diagnosis, because it is a difficult disease to diagnose.
Part of the problem is that juvenile arthritis isn’t a single disease. Instead, it’s an umbrella term that describes the symptoms of most children with chronic arthritis of unknown cause, according to Dr. Thomas A. J. Lehman of the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York.
Treatment of childhood arthritis, according to the University of Washington Orthopedics and Sports Medicine department, may include medications, eye care, dental care, healthy diet and exercise.
They can also be sure their children eat a healthy diet combined with expressly formulated nutritional supplements for kids to help keep the children healthy during treatment.