How to Help a Teen With Juvenile Arthritis

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Arthritis is not just a disease that affects senior citizens. Thousands of children in the United States are affected by juvenile arthritis that causes pain in their joints. Children with juvenile arthritis may have pain or swelling in their joints. This can make it harder for kids to run, jump, play, and generally be kids. If you have a teen with juvenile arthritis, here are some things you can do to help.

  • Talk to their doctor. The most important thing you can do to help a child with juvenile arthritis is talk to their doctor and come up with a plan. Your doctor can tell you if your child needs medication, and can prescribe exercise or even physical therapy. IU Health can connect you with a primary care doctor today.
  • Help them with their health. Good overall health is needed to keep arthritis under control. When a child is a teenager and they’re concerned with school and friends, it can be hard to focus on health. Assisting them with healthy eating and getting exercise can make a big, positive impact.
  • Help them with their pain. Once you have a plan in place with your doctor, you can help your child deal with their pain when it does flare up. It’s important to be patient and understand what they’re going through.
  • Be there for them. Living with the pain of arthritis can take an emotional toll on a teenager. Make sure that you are there for your child. Listen to them if they need someone to talk to, and assure them as much as you possibly can that they can overcome arthritis to live a great life.
  • Help them stay positive. In addition to listening, make sure you keep a positive attitude. You staying positive can help them stay positive, even if they are in pain.

Remember- the first step in helping a teen deal with juvenile arthritis is creating a plan with their primary care doctor.

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