Woman surrounded by circles and little dots on and around her body, indicating symptoms.

Community Views: Unusual and Frustrating RA Symptoms

Those of us who have rheumatoid arthritis (RA) tend to be quite familiar with the standard laundry list of symptoms associated with this condition, like pain, joint swelling, and fatigue.

Living with these symptoms every day can be quite frustrating. There are also a lot of other symptoms we experience that aren’t discussed as often, yet their impact can be significant.

We asked members of our Facebook community to tell us what their most unusual or frustrating symptoms are. Here’s what they had to say!

Extreme fatigue and difficulty sleeping

  • I’m tired all the time.Costochondritis
  • I have trouble with sleeplessness.
  • I can’t sleep.
  • I’m exhausted but I can’t sleep well.

Vision or eye problems

  • I have issues with my retinas and floaters in my eyes.
  • I have dry eyes.
  • I see lights when I turn my head.
  • I have eye pain.
  • My eyes are sore, watery, and blurry.
  • My eye sockets hurt and I have very blurry vision at times.
  • I have inflammation in my eyes.

Emotional or thinking problems

  • I struggle with depression.
  • I hate that I never know how I’m going to feel.
  • I feel like I have brain fog.
  • I hate how unpredictable it is.
  • People just don’t understand, and they think I’m lazy or that I’m acting like a child.
  • It’s so difficult not knowing how I’m going to feel from day to day.
  • I really lack mental clarity.
  • People assume I’m lazy because I move slowly.

Issues with my mouth and throat

  • I struggle with dry mouth.
  • I have trouble swallowing.
  • My eyes, mouth, and ears are very dry.
  • My throat is always sore.
  • I have trouble with my jaw feeling tight and painful.
  • When I talk, my jaw gets tight.

Feelings of having a flu or fever

  • I feel like I have the flu, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • I get fevers.
  • Every day, it’s like I have a horrible case of the flu.

Limited mobility or grip loss

  • I hate that I can’t function like healthy people do.
  • I can’t hold on to things and it drives me crazy.
  • I can’t walk well.
  • My toes and ankles just ache.
  • My dexterity has deteriorated.
  • My balance is just off.
  • My legs get numb.
  • Walking is so painful.
  • I wish I could wear shoes without my feet hurting.

Problems with internal organs

  • I have an increased heart rate.
  • I have awful heart palpitations and I become breathless very easily.
  • I have both heart and lung disease as a direct result of my RA.
  • I have lung issues, including ground-glass opacity and costochondritis.
  • I have dizzy spells and pass out.
  • I have a lot of chest pain.
  • My vitamin D levels are low.
  • I have nodules on my lungs.
  • My white blood cell count is high.
  • I get a lot of bruising.
  • I have significant hair loss.

Issue with joints or connective tissue that aren’t normally associated with RA

  • My collarbone is constantly in pain.
  • I have severe tendinitis in both of my forearms.
  • I have tendinitis in my ankles.
  • I have carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • I have RA of the lumbar spine.
  • I have sacroiliac joint dysfunction.
  • I have inflammation and swelling after just 20 minutes of work or being exposed to heat.

Other unusual symptoms

  • My skin becomes blackened in different areas, which looks like bruising.
  • I have skin nodules.
  • I get bruising and bleeding under my skin when I’m flaring.
  • I have nodules in my feet that create callouses.
  • I get frequent bug bites.
  • I have certain food intolerances.

What about you? What frustrating or unusual symptoms do you experience from your RA? Please share with us in the comments!

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The RheumatoidArthritis.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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