This month is Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month. Did you know that approximately half of the population who are over the age of 65 suffer from arthritic foot pain? What many people don’t know is that nearly 300,000 children in our country under the age of 18 experience arthritic conditions. That makes the perfect time for Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, Dr. Aliza V. Eisen, and Cassandra Stache, DPM of greater Philadelphia’s Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center to share information regarding this condition that may be affecting your child.
Each foot has 33 joints, which is why arthritis can affect our feet. This is particularly true since our ankle and foot joints always bear our weight and provide us stability and mobility. Arthritis swelling and pain in the ankles or feet need to be treated promptly so it doesn’t lead to more severe issues.
Indications of Juvenile Arthritis
When children exhibit symptoms of arthritis, it’s typically in the following ways:
- Stiff ankle, toe, or knee joints in the morning or after a long nap.
- Symptoms that remain for a long time, i.e., 6+ weeks.
- Joint immobility
- Excessive instability or clumsiness.
- Toenails that become ingrown or separate due to swollen toes.
- Swollen joint(s)
- Swelling in the lymph nodes.
- Recurring tenderness, redness, heat, or pain in a joint.
- Changes in skin, including growths and rashes.
- Joint popping or cracking sounds when walking.
When children are affected by arthritis, the symptoms can calm down or flare up. When severe enough, juvenile arthritis can cause joints and bones not yet fully developed to develop unevenly.
Early evaluation and identification can help to prevent more serious issues from developing later. This is why you should contact Greater Philadelphia’s Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center. You can click here to locate contact information for the nearest office to book your appointment.