Parental Attitudes and Juvenile Arthritis
By Charlotte Huff
Learn how your own perceptions, reactions and attitudes can influence how your child copes with arthritis.
When your child is diagnosed with juvenile arthritis (JA), you may find yourself asking how he’s feeling several times a day. But despite the natural tendency to worry, you can’t allow your own anxieties to shape your child’s perceptions. By developing a positive and proactive attitude, clinicians believe parents can help reframe their child’s perception about his life with arthritis.
“Even kids with the most challenging arthritis symptoms do very well if their parents have a good attitude,” says Suzie Wright, an occupational therapist in the Department of Pediatrics at Kansas University Medical Center.
Still, it’s a difficult balancing act, one that requires time and patience for parents to master, says Mark Connelly, PhD, a clinical health psychologist and assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine. It’s a balance, he says, between encouraging children to learn to self-manage their condition and setting expectations, while also providing emotional support as they live with a chronic condition.
Diverting the Focus from Arthritis
Influencing Behavior & Strategizing
Stay in the Know. Live in the Yes.
Join the Live Yes! Arthritis Network. Tell us a little about yourself and you will receive emails packed with the latest information and resources to live your best life and connect with others.