As part of National Arthritis Month, which takes place each May, I am asking that you help me in my mission to create awareness of a disease that is often ignored by the mainstream media--juvenile arthritis.
“Imagine waking up every morning so stiff from joint pain that you are barely able to crawl out of bed. You hobble your way to the tub to fix a hot bath—after all, it’s the only thing that will help your joints to loosen up. After taking a bath, your stiffness has lessened, leaving you with just the normal aches and pains you’re faced with daily. Today the pain may not be so severe, but tomorrow it could be much worse. It’s the type of pain that makes everyday tasks quite difficult—sometimes even impossible. All you want to do is escape. Going to bed has become your favorite “activity,” just as long as you don’t lie there thinking about the day ahead.
The situation I just described might sound like the life of someone in his or her golden years—perhaps even your own grandmother or grandfather—but it’s not. It is the life of more than three hundred thousand children and teens living with juvenile arthritis.”
The above excerpt was taken from Chapter 2 of my recently released book Juvenile Arthritis: The Ultimate Teen Guide. The book not only shares the stories of teens and pre-teens living with juvenile arthritis, but also serves as a comprehensive self-help guide for individuals who have the disease and their families.
As part of National Arthritis Month, which takes place each May, I am asking that you help me in my mission to create awareness of a disease that is often ignored by the mainstream media. Please give those of us who have juvenile arthritis a voice in our quest for better treatments and a cure. So many members of the public are unaware that children can get arthritis and that it can severely impact our mobility in addition to causing much pain. And sadly, despite what commercials show, aspirin is not a cure or even of much help to those dealing with juvenile arthritis. In fact, many of the treatments now on the market only work for a small percentage of patients and many stop working after several years of taking them.
Personally speaking, over the years, arthritis has restricted more and more of my mobility and I now rely on a wheelchair to get around. My goal in life is to help others become more aware of this debilitating disease so future generations of children do not have to experience all that I have went through and can live their lives without limitations. I hope that you will find it in your hearts to stop allowing this disease to go unnoticed and ignored by sharing our stories.