When you think about arthritis and joint pain, you probably associate the problem primarily with the elderly. However, the statistics suggest that it’s not just the oldest and wisest among us who suffer from arthritis; there’s a whole range of problems that fall under the Juvenile Arthritis (JA) umbrella, according to the Arthritis Foundation.
The foundation explains that JA (or pediatric rheumatic disease) is not a stand-alone disease; it refers to several problems related to autoimmune disorders of inflammation that can affect children under 16. In the U.S. alone, around 300,000 children are affected by JA, notes the source. In recognition of JA Month (July), let’s look at 6 facts about it…
1. Juvenile Arthritis Affects more than Joints
According to the Arthritis Foundation, JA can do more than cause joint discomfort in young people. While many types of JA share commonalities like swelling, “each type of JA is distinct and has its own special concerns and symptoms”, it notes.
For example, some versions of JA don’t fall under the classic definition of arthritis at all; the problem can affect the eyes, skin (Juvenile dermatomyositis) and digestive system as well, according to the foundation.