Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis Symptoms
These are some of the most common early signs and symptoms of arthritis in children. A child may not have all of these symptoms.
- Joints that are warm to the touch
- Swelling and tenderness at joints
- Favoring one limb over another or limping
- Pain (often worse following sleep or inactivity)
- Stiffness, especially upon waking in the morning
- Inability to bend or straighten joints completely
- Decreased physical activity
- Sleep problems
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Reduced appetite and/or weight loss
Not all children with JIA will have the same symptoms, and some symptoms are specific to a subtype of JIA. Symptoms can change from day to day or throughout a single day.
It’s important to talk to a child’s doctor to ensure that these symptoms mean that a child has JIA instead of an injury or a different illness. Then parents and the doctor can begin the process of monitoring symptoms to establish a pattern. Arthritis affects every child differently, so it’s important to recognize the signs so that a timely and accurate diagnosis can be made to ensure the best possible outcome for a child’s health and well-being.