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7 Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms That Shouldn’t Be Ignored

Consult a doctor immediately.

What is rheumatoid arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder that tends to begin slowly with minor symptoms that come and go. The symptoms affect both sides of the body and progress over a period of weeks or months. Not everyone will share the same symptoms as it differs from each individual and changes day-to-day. Here are seven RA symptoms that you should definitely check with your doctor. You can learn how to manage these symptoms easily here.

young woman exercising outside with wrist pain

Numbness 

RA affects the small nerves in your hands or feet. It will make you feel numb like you’re being stuck with pins and needles. Your hands and feet can potentially change colour when it’s cold. Rheumatoid vasculitis can also cause numbness, tingling, burning, or pain in your hands or feet due to damaged nerves. 

Fatigue

The feeling of fatigue usually sets in before any other symptoms become noticeable. It may come and go from week to week or day-to-day. Fatigue is sometimes accompanied by a general feeling of ill health or even depression.

Morning Stiffness

Morning stiffness is a common early sign of arthritis. If it lasts for a few minutes, it is usually a symptom of a form of arthritis that can worsen over time without proper treatment. Stiffness that you experience for several hours is a symptom of inflammatory arthritis and is typical of RA. You might also feel a similar sensation after napping or sitting.

Joint Pain

Joint stiffness is usually followed by joint tenderness or pain during movement or even while you’re resting and it affects both sides of the body equally. This pain is usually felt in the fingers and wrists during the beginning stages of RA. You might also feel pain in your knees, feet, ankles, or shoulders.  

old woman lying on the couch because of joint pain while cleaning

Minor Swelling

This symptom is common during the early stages of RA. Mild inflammation causes your joints to appear bigger than normal. This is caused by the warmth of the joints. You will experience flare-ups from a few days to a few weeks, and this is expected to increase with time. 

Fever

A low-grade fever can be an early warning sign of RA, especially when accompanied by other symptoms like joint pain and inflammation. That’s when the inflammation gets out of control. It’s important to note that a fever higher than 38°C is more likely to be a sign of some other form of illness or infection. It’s important to constantly monitor your body’s temperature to determine the nature of your fever.

Less Range In Motion

Inflammation in your joints can cause tendons and ligaments to deform and become unstable. As RA progresses, you may find yourself unable to bend or straighten some joints. Your range of motion may also be affected by pain, but it’s still important to engage in regular, gentle exercise.

About PouchPASS

PouchPASS wearable technology allows you to monitor your body temperature in real-time. It automatically syncs with our mobile app, allowing you to monitor your health status easily on the go. Its accurate temperature diary enables early detection of fever symptoms, especially those related to Rheumatoid Arthritis. Try one today!

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I personally don’t need to monitor my body temperature since I rarely get a fever but this might be useful for some people in my RA facebook group