My JRA Heros

My JRA Heros
My JRA Heros- Jake & Hannah

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Visual Reminder About "Aurthur"

The past two weeks Jake and Hannah have been asked repetitively, "why are you wearing splints"?  I think they have had mixed emotions about wearing their splints.  Initially, it was kinda cool and they could take it on and off, as desired.  But within a few days it became uncool to have splints and only a visual reminder about "Mr. Aurthur". They have talked about and rehearsed as to what they'll tell their friends.  I have done my best to encourage them to tell the truth--- "tell them you have arthritis and this splint is to help with my pain".  Many adults have even questioned me about why Jake and Hannah both are wearing splints with arthritis.  What people may not understand is that splints help keep joints in the correct position and relieve pain.  When Jake and Hannah's joint is becoming deformed (bent in the wrong position) or it is at risk for it, a splint may help position or stretch the joint gradually back to its normal position or try to keep it in a normal position. 

Hannah wearing her wrist splint & ring finger splints
Jake thought it was neat how his splint was costumed made

Jake sporting his day time splints.
Not as comfy as they look!
Night Splints
This month Jake and Hannah both got splints. Jake got 5 new splints, which include bilateral wrist splints for day time usage, and bilateral wrist splints for night usage and a left foot splint.  Hannah got a right wrist splint and ring splints for her two fingers on her right hand. 

Not sure how compliant kids have been wearing their splints as ordered by their rheumatologist.  Jake is now asking "can he wear just one splint at night or can he skip it tonight?"  Hannah has lost a ring splint from last week's dance class.  I have already heard the many excuses as to why they don't want to wear their splints.   Some of these complaints include: it's uncomfortable, sweaty, hot, can't write with them, can't drink with them, can't wash hands with them, the fastners get hooked on clothing, it hurts more.  The biggest complaint is the appearance of the splint generates many comments from people (friends and adults).
This makes Jake and Hannah  feel different from others! 


  1. Thank you for explaining the splints. I had just finished reading your last post and was wondering about them. I keep hearing how splints are bad because the joint should never be immobilized yet I have often doubted that. So thank you for this post :) I also feel much better about Jenna's hypermobility after reading your last post and the doctors explanation. I cannot wait to get Jenna BACK to Duke children's so the doctors there can figure out WTH is going on with her and how can they help her.

  2. I think it's great that you posted this and explained "how" splints's definitely individualized and some kids benefit while others may not...we go and get Parker's orthotics this week...his toes are all turning and the rhuemy explained the purpose in a very similiar way that you support, slowly stretch, and hopefuly turn them back before they fuse in the wrong direction. I am sure I will get the resistance's hard for kids to understand how intrusive things are really going to help them. And I know as a mom that dealing with comments of others is really hard...most are out of curiousity or trying to understand...but then there are the others...well....Hugs to the kids! they are my little heros!