Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is the most common form of arthritis in children. Since the teen years are a time of huge personal growth and change, children need strong social and emotional support to better deal with their condition as they go through those changes. With the generous support of the Arthritis Society’s donors, Dr. Stinson’s recent work has shed light on how young people with JIA can better manage their condition. Thousands of young Canadians will live better as a result.

Jennifer StinsonDr. Stinson’s study involved an online peer-mentoring program, called iPeer2Peer. Her study showed that teens with JIA improved in their ability to self-manage their condition through iPeer2Peer. Teens in the study were happy with the program and said they would recommend it to their peers. Dr. Stinson found that teens who served as peer mentors also benefitted, supporting and encouraging them to take a greater role in their own self-management.

The Arthritis Society-funded researcher has also created an online program called [Teens Taking Charge: Managing JIA Online.

This program gives teens and their parents an available resource they can turn to for peer support, inspiration and information to better manage their arthritis and learn skills to move successfully to adult care.

Research like this is helping people live better with arthritis today, while we work together towards a cure.