Auto-immune diseases can be a scary deal. Sometimes, in very rare cases, our bodies might break free from their normal functioning conditions and some of the most vital processing in the body may not happen efficiently, malfunction, or even grow out of control. Read on and discover all about the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis

The immune response is one of those important functions, which acts as a second and the mainline of defense protecting the body against severe infections or illnesses from pathogens like bacteria and fungus. But in very rare cases, our immune system might malfunction and grow out of control. In such cases, the white blood cells start behaving abnormally and attack the healthy tissues and cells inside the body, leading to disastrous outcomes.

This condition is known as auto-immune-related illness. Rheumatoid arthritis is one of these auto-immune-related diseases in which our immune system target healthy tissues present particularly in the lining of our joints leading to swelling, stiffness, and inflammation. It is a very painful condition and must be taken care of at the earliest to ease symptoms. Women are more affected by this disease as compared to men because of several hormonal and biological factors.

However, it's important to know the early signs and symptoms to conclude if you're suffering from this condition so that you can act well in time. Here's a list of some symptoms one might experience if they have Rheumatoid arthritis. 

Early Symptoms

Some early symptoms of Rheumatoid arthritis might not even be associated with joint pain because this is a progressive disease, as it gets worse with time. So it doesn't straightforwardly affect the joint in the early stages but the joint pain starts as soon as the disease progresses with time. However, there are some early signs to know if you're affected by the illness.

Early on, one might start experiencing fatigue for longer exposures of time. You might feel tired all the time even if your body is well-rested, followed by mild fever and loss of appetite. If you experience any of these symptoms along with unforeseen weight loss, consider getting diagnosed immediately. These symptoms might hint at the progression of this disease which then leads to painful joint stiffness. 

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Joint Stiffness

As the disease progresses, one might start experiencing excruciating pain and stiffness in the joints throughout the body especially in the morning, just after waking up. These morning sessions of joint stiffness followed by pain will start getting more frequent as time passes. However, you might not experience any pain while your body is active and working but as soon as you rest or if your body stays inactive for even a few minutes, the pain kicks in. The pain and stiffness will make it very difficult to even move and do simple tasks. 

Swelling And Joint Pain

While you struggle with the stiffness part, the body starts to exhibit far worse symptoms in the meantime. This includes swelling and redness over the affected joint areas, which is more painful even to touch than to move. Rheumatoid arthritis usually targets smaller joints(foods for joint pain) at first like wrists, finger joints, toes followed by larger ones like knees, shoulders, elbows, neck, etc. 

Rheumatoid Lumps Over Joints

Early Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis

There might be some lumps of swollen tissues that start showing up in the affected joint areas. You might be able to feel them through the skin by just touching your joints. These lumps are more likely to show up in the elbows and fingers. It's a sign that indicates that the immune system(immunity-boosting workout) is destroying that tissue and the lumps are similar to that of a fresh wound. 

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Deformation Of The Skeletal Structure

skeletol structure deformation

The regular inflammation that the joints and surrounding tissues go through on a daily basis might lead to permanent damage to the bones, ligaments, and tendons that keep them in place. This damage to the structural components of our joints might end up causing deformity to the overall skeletal structure.

Rheumatoid arthritis can severely damage the bone, eroding away its composition from the joint areas. Your fingers might never look the same. They will never be in a linear position but instead bend in different directions on every joint.

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So, in case you are facing any such symptoms, do reach out for medical advice from an expert. Stay tuned to Her Zindagi for more such pieces.