Parents and caregivers often tend to overlook symptoms of arthritis in children as it is considered as problem of the elderly. They fail to appreciate that arthritis can occur in children---arthritis develops in approximately one child in every 1,000 in a given year (but most of them are mild) and about one child in every 10,000 will develops severe arthritis.Consult your doctor if your child has joint pain, swelling or stiffness for more than a few weeks. Read to know more on when to call a doctor for juvenile arthritis.
Consult a doctor immediately for arthritis if:
Seek medical advice for if any of the following symptoms continue for more than 2 days:
Watchful Waiting if you suspect joint problem: It can be difficult to be sure if an infant has joint pain due to arthritis or injury. You can wait for a few days before consulting a doctor the infant or young child is otherwise healthy and playful but:
You may try home treatment such as hot or cold packs, rest, and pain relieving medication such as acetaminophen for a few days for mild joint pain. But in case there is no improvement in 1 to 2 weeks or if the symptoms worsen consult your doctor.
Who to consult: The initial evaluation of joint pain and other symptoms suggestive of any type of juvenile arthritis can be done by:
If your health professional suspects juvenile arthritis you may be referred to a rheumatologist who specializes in children's rheumatic disease (pediatric rheumatologist).
Juvenile idiopathic arthritis is usually managed by a team of specialist which includes: