When your child is diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA), you face many challenges. However, you are not alone. A team of medical professionals will work with you to manage JIA. More detailed information is downloadable below. Of course, your doctor, specia
list and other health professionals will be able to answer any further questions.
A few points to consider:
- JIA is not regarded as an hereditary disease, though genetics may play a part in some forms of JIA. Having one child with JIA does not mean your other children will develop it.
- The outlook for children with JIA is usually very positive. It is impossible to predict the exact prognosis for your child but most children with JIA will no longer have active symptoms by the time they enter adulthood.
- The cause of JIA is unknown and you could not have prevented it.
- Everyone is different and what works for one child may not work for another. Over time, you will learn to understand how your child’s JIA affects him/her and the non-verbal indicators of how he/she is feeling.
- The management of JIA is a team approach. Take guidance from all members of the team to make the best decisions for your child.
- Your child’s school needs to be a part of the team. Make sure that JIA appears on their student medical record and their teachers and other caregivers are informed.
- The aim of any JIA treatment or management plan is to reduce the symptoms (such as stiffness, pain and inflammation); enable your child to lead the most normal life possible and to slow or stop the progression of the illness.
- Medicines are a major part of the treatment of JIA and your child may need to take more than one type of medication.
- Many of the medicines used today not only reduce the symptoms but also slow the progress of the illness.
- All medicines have benefits as well as side effects but without medicines, permanent joint damage and a poorer prognosis are more likely.
- Overall, your child should be encouraged to keep his/her life as normal as possible. This sense of being the same as others, helps their self-esteem and feelings of being in control of their illness.
For more information contact Arthritis and Osteoporosis WA on 08 9388 2199.