Morning stiffness is a common sign in many people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis; therefore do not be shocked to hear the doctor asking if you experience morning stiffness or some kind of discomfort. Rheumatoid arthritis morning stiffness can last for at least an hour before the joints can become strong again to get involved in any activity. However it is not guaranteed that everyone suffering from rheumatoid arthritis must experience morning stiffness. When in some rheumatoid arthritis patients the morning stiffness is accompanied by joint pain, in others it is just a discomfort that prevents them from engaging in activities involving the joints.
After the stiffness has gone, the joints become strong again; however the stiffness can return again during the day but for shorter periods. Rheumatoid arthritis morning stiffness can affect the fingers; this is usually a sign that something is wrong with your health and you should be quick in visiting the doctor. The doctor will want to know how long the stiffness lasts and how often you experience it and for how long you have been experiencing it. The answers will help the doctor to determine how much the disease has progressed in the body. They are also good in differentiating rheumatoid arthritis from other types of arthritis that also have morning stiffness as a symptom.
If the whole body has been affected by rheumatoid arthritis, the rheumatoid arthritis morning stiffness is usually present in almost every joint in the body; however when the has disease not yet progressed much, only the small joints in the hands are involved in the morning stiffness. It is good to report the stiffness as soon as you start experiencing it as that will help control the way the disease will progress in the body. With early treatment, serious damages can be avoided and it can be easy to go through remissions for longer than when you report the initial symptoms late. When put under medication, your stiffness is supposed to show progress by reducing the hours it lasts before going away. However if you do not note any change, it means that you are not responding to medicine and you are supposed to be put under more vigorous medication.
Rheumatoid arthritis morning stiffness can be tested by carrying out grip testing; if the grip is weak then your condition is more serious and you need quick attention. More to testing the strength of the grip and the seriousness of the morning stiffness, grip testing can also be used in determining the muscle strength in rheumatoid arthritis patients. The inflammation affects the muscles and this in turn leads to muscle erosion and weakness. The main reason that can lead to a weak grip in rheumatoid arthritis patients in the pain that is that results from inflammation of the joints. Together with the rheumatoid arthritis morning stiffness, the patient’s wrist can also tend to be swollen in the morning hours. All these are the effects of rheumatoid arthritis. The swelling can be the reason for morning stiffness; early treatment can prevent further damage of the wrist joints as well as overall body joints.