898 898 8787

Arthritis in Young Adults: Understanding the Impact, Risk Factors, and Early Diagnosis - MyHealth


Arthritis in Young Adults: Understanding the Impact, Risk Factors, and Early Diagnosis


Medically Reviewed By
Dr. Ragiinii Sharma

Written By Meenakshi
on Oct 12, 2023

Last Edit Made By Meenakshi
on Mar 15, 2024

World Arthritis Day

Do you wake up to achy joints, muscle stiffness, or persistent discomfort? Or do you feel difficulty moving your joints, especially in the morning or long hours of inactivity? These symptoms might be your body's way of whispering a warning, especially if you're a young adult or youth. Well, if you're young, Arthritis might be the last thing that you blame it for, but it could be that. Remember, Arthritis is not just for older adults; it can hit people of all ages and be a real pain, both physically and in your daily life.

In fact, according to a survey conducted on more than 1lac patients, Redcliffe Labs found elevated levels of rheumatoid factor in nearly 12% of individuals aged 26 to 40. Since it's World Arthritis Day, we couldn't think of the right moment to talk about Arthritis in young adults, how it affects them, what makes it more likely to happen, and why it's super important to find out about it early. So, let's get started.

What is Arthritis? - Understanding Arthritis:

Arthritis is not just used for a single disease but is a collective term for over 100 inflammatory joint diseases that cause pain, stiffness, and swelling in the affected joints. The IA spectrum is broad, and RA is the most common type. It is a painful, disabling disease that shortens lifespan and can significantly impact the systemic health and patient's lifestyle. Early diagnosis and treatment of RA can markedly decrease disability and pain and very likely lengthen life, and the "window of opportunity" presented in the early stages of the disease must be recognized. Once the diagnosis of RA is made, disease-modifying agents can bring about positive outcomes.

What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune inflammatory disease characterized by peripheral and symmetrical polyarthritis. It can be divided into Very Early Rheumatoid Arthritis (VERA), diagnosed up to 3 months of symptoms, and late-onset (Late Early Rheumatoid Arthritis – LERA), diagnosed between 3 and 12 months. We have set our goals to identify people in VERA.

The most prevalent types among the younger population are Rheumatoid Arthritis and Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, but they can also develop other forms, such as Ankylosing Spondylitis and Psoriatic Arthritis.

Also Read: Want to learn more about Rheumatoid Arthritis? Also, give it a quick read.

The Impact On Young Adults:

Arthritis can be challenging for all, particularly young adults, as it affects their physical and emotional well-being or quality of life and career prospects. The onset of Arthritis in young adults can influence their active lives; it can disrupt daily activities, from simple tasks like getting dressed to participating in sports or pursuing a physically demanding career. The chronic pain and disability associated with Arthritis can lead to depression, anxiety, and social isolation, making it a significant concern for the mental health of young individuals. According to recent findings, most adults with Arthritis are more at risk of being depressed or anxious, as it breaks their confidence and makes them feel incapable.

Risk Factors for Arthritis in Young Adults:

Now the question comes: what sow the seed of this dangerous disease among young adults? What increases their risk of getting affected even at a much younger age? Understanding these risk factors is crucial in recognizing the potential for Arthritis in youth. While it can occur without any obvious cause, several factors can increase one's risk of getting affected, including:

  • Genetics: If you have a family history of Arthritis, whether you like it or not, it significantly increases your risks, too, as genetic predisposition is the major risk factor of Arthritis in younger adults.
  • Gender: Yes, your gender is another reason that increases your risks. As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), most types of Arthritis are more common in women. According to a National Institute of Health study, women are more pain-sensitive. Therefore, Arthritis, including Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis, is much more prevalent in females and accounts for most pain from musculoskeletal conditions.
  • Infections: Certain infections can also trigger immune response, leading to Arthritis in genetically susceptible individuals.
  • Environmental Factors: In addition, your habits or surroundings, like smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke or a history of injuries to the joints, can contribute to a higher risk of Arthritis.
  • Obesity: If you are overweight, we are sorry to say, but obesity is not just adding extra pounds around your waist; it is also causing additional stress on the joints, which can lead to Arthritis, especially in weight-bearing joints like the knees and hips. Therefore, obese people are more likely to develop the condition.

So, we understood the factors that make one more at risk of the disease, but what to do? The answer is simple: recognize your signs and get tested immediately. Diagnosing early is paramount in managing the condition effectively, especially in younger adults. If you still have doubts, let's explore the role of early diagnosis in helping manage diabetes.

Tips to reduce your risk of early onset of arthritis

The Role Of Early Diagnosis For Arthritis Management:

Ignoring the signs can lead to the progression of the disease, causing irreversible joint damage. Therefore, early diagnosis is essential, as it offers several benefits, like:

  • Prevent Severe Joint Damage: Arthritis, if left untreated, can lead to severe joint damage, and early diagnosis can save you from such scenarios. Early diagnosis enables healthcare professionals to suggest medicines or other preventive measures to reduce inflammation, manage pain, and prevent joint damage. It can help young adults reduce the risk of disability and lead a better life.
  • Supports Mental Health: As stated above, Arthritis can also influence your emotions and mental well-being. Addressing it in time helps in managing the psychological impact of the condition. It is particularly vital for young adults as they are more prone to mental health-related issues due to disrupted active lifestyles.
  • Prevent Complications: Some forms of Arthritis, like Rheumatoid Arthritis, can lead to complications affecting other organs. Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent such stages.

Improve Quality Of Life: Early diagnosis and intervention ensure the symptoms of this autoimmune condition are managed well, and you can lead a Pain-Free Life.

Symptoms of arthritis in young adults

So, Delay No More, Take Action Today!

Observed every year on 12th October, World Arthritis Day is a reminder that we need to pay attention to the disease and act early. The year's theme is "It is in your hands, take action," emphasizing spreading awareness about the impact of Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Diseases (RMDs). It's every individual's responsibility to do their part to manage the disease, and here are some proactive steps that can help:

  • Know The Symptoms: Awareness is the key! So, be aware of the common symptoms of Arthritis, such as reduced range of motion, muscle stiffness, joint pain, or swelling.
  • Consider Regular Checkups: Moreover, make routine Arthritis Screening your ally, as it can help you identify the threat early, even before the symptoms strike, ensuring better management.
  • Maintain A Healthy Lifestyle: Don't take your dietary habits for granted. Choose clean and green eating to ensure nothing could trigger the immune response leading to the disease.


Arthritis is not limited to elderly adults; it can impact young adults and youth, affecting their lives in various ways. The key is awareness, early diagnosis, and proactive management. Young adults must remember that they are not alone in their journey, and support is available to help them navigate the challenges of Arthritis.

Book Arthritis Screening With Redcliffe Labs Today!

Redcliffe Labs has you covered if you seek a true diagnostic partner. You can book Arthritis Package Essential for just Rs 1599 and get tested comfortably from your home, thanks to our doorstep sample collection facility. We at Redcliffe Labs are trying to bring out the maximum impact of our screening program to diagnose these cases early so they can live quality lives to otherwise future diagnosed cases. In a meta-analysis of 14 trials by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), patients suffering from a shorter disease duration were likelier to show improvement than long-term sufferers when properly diagnosed and treated. This finding supports the concept of a window of opportunity in that early treatment improves short-term and long-term outcomes. So, why wait, and what for? Book your Arthritis Screening with us today and take steps for a healthier and improved quality of life.

Remember, on World Arthritis Day and beyond, the power to control your health is in your hands. So, don't wait, "It is in your hands; take action."

Leave a comment

Consult Now

Share MyHealth Blog