LETTERS TO THE EDITOR - Nearly 300,000 kids have arthritis

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You might remember me from my lemonade-stand sale I held last summer to increase awareness and raise money for juvenile arthritis or JIA.

May is National Arthritis Awareness Month.

When I was diagnosed with JIA last May I thought it was something that only older people would get. But did you know that nearly 300,000 children in the United States have juvenile arthritis and it is one of the most common chronic-childhood conditions? There is no cure for arthritis and once you have it you do not outgrow it.

Here are some things you might not know: Arthritis means inflammation of the joints. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. It's estimated that 0.3 to 1.5 percent of the U.S. population has rheumatoid arthritis.

I want to encourage people to learn more about the disease. For information you can go to arthritis.org to find out. Be sure to wear lots of blue (it is the color for arthritis).

I will be hosting my annual lemonade stand for juvenile arthritis in July so I hope you will stop by. I'll keep you posted on the date.

Allison Wanichek

Walla Walla

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