Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic condition affecting the joints in your hands and feet. Unlike osteoarthritis where wear-and-tear damage occurs, rheumatoid arthritis causes inflammation and swelling in the lining of joints, eventually resulting in bone deterioration and joints deforming. Rheumatoid arthritis is what is known as an autoimmune disorder. This means that the condition occurs because your own immune system erroneously attacks your body’s tissues. This can also cause fever and fatigue to the person affected apart from joint problems.
Most commonly occurring between the ages of 40-60 rheumatoid arthritis is more common in women than in men. Most treatment targets symptom control and prevention of bone and joint damage.
Do you or someone who know have rheumatoid arthritis? Help is available. You might qualify for the Canadian Disability Tax Credit and other benefits offered by the Canadian government.
The basic cause of rheumatoid arthritis is the body’s own immune system attacking the lining of membranes around the joints. Doctors and researchers do not exactly know why is process occurs and agree that genetics might be to blame. Although genes are not the cause of rheumatoid arthritis, you might be more prone to infection and viruses that might actually cause the disease to occur. When the disease does occur, the inflammation causes the membrane lining to thicken damaging cartilage, bone and joint, causing joints to weaken. Eventually the joint loses shape and deforms.
The most common signs of rheumatoid arthritis include:
- Joints that are tender, warm and swollen to the touch
- Morning stiffness when you start the day that can last for hours
- Hard lumps of tissue under the skin on the arms known as rheumatoid nodules
- Weight loss, fever and constant fatigue
Consult with your family physician if you can feel a swelling in your joints and have started to notice regular pain.
Disability Tax Credits for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Do you suffer from daily aches and pains due to rheumatoid arthritis? Is the disorder seriously affecting your quality of life? You might be eligible for the Disability Tax Credit under more than one category, including, but not limited to, walking, dressing and feeding. HandyTax can help you claim Canadian tax benefits. Contact us today!