The goals of medical treatment for juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) are to reduce your child's joint pain and to prevent disability. Physical therapy and medicine are the basis of medical treatment for JIA.
Treatment is determined by the type and severity of JIA. Even when JIA is uncomplicated, an affected child may need years of medical treatment or checkups. To make sure your child's care is appropriate for the stage of disease, work closely with the medical team. Learn as much as you can about your child's disease and treatments, and stay on schedule with medicine and exercise.
Because pain, stiffness, and swelling can change from day to day, be sure to learn how to assess your child's condition. It can be hard to know if children are having pain. Some children are not able to say what they feel, while others are afraid to say they feel pain if they think they will have to go to the doctor or think they will make their parents upset. Children also simply learn to cope with pain by sleeping or playing. To know a child is in pain, you may need to look for changes such as stiff movements, rubbing a joint or muscle, or avoiding movement. You may also notice your child is irritable or easily upset.