Overcoming a disease: Ms. Baton Rouge Jadian Daniels fights lupus

Jadian Daniels

Jadian Daniels

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Ms. Baton Rouge Jadian Daniels, a university alumna, continues to battle lupus since being diagnosed in February of 2019.

According to the Lupus Foundation of America, lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes the victim to experience a large range of symptoms throughout their skin, joints and organs.

Daniels has been experiencing symptoms of lupus since she was about 16 years old.

“My first diagnosis was carpal tunnel syndrome then tendonitis,” said Daniels. “My doctor said ‘Maybe you have juvenile arthritis.’ After I had my daughter, it was undifferentiated connective tissue disorder because I had a positive ANA, but my doctor first told me that she didn’t think anything was wrong.”

It takes a longer time for an individual to be diagnosed with lupus.

“In order for you to be diagnosed with lupus, you have to fall under the four of eleven symptoms, and then they diagnose you after a period of time,” shared Daniels. “So you kind of have to keep a paper trail of everything. I saw another rheumatologist a year later and still had a positive ANA. I was just diagnosed with lupus in February.”

Even though the disease has not impacted Daniels in her pageant lifestyle, it has affected her career as a teacher.

“It hasn’t really affected me as far as competing in pageants as much as other things in life,” said Daniels. “As far as that goes, I don’t know how my next year during my reign is going to go. So far, I have been feeling okay. I know stress is a trigger for me. When I’m teaching, I’m exposed to children that get sick all the time, so I usually catch what they have.”

The disease has also affected Daniels’ immune system.

“Along with lupus comes other things because your body is trying to attack itself,” explained Daniels. “At this point, it’s easy to get sick from other things. A cold is easy for me to come about. I’m 24, and I have shingles on and off. Lupus is a disease that people don’t really take seriously because they’re not aware about it and how it can affect people’s everyday lives.”

Daniels does not want to let the disease be a hindrance to celebrating other aspects of life.

“It’s part of life,” said Daniels. “You learn how to deal, cope and maneuver with it to do what you have to do. My goal is to stay healthy. I am competing for Miss Louisiana for America, which is for women who have children.”

Daniels wants to help the community become aware of the disease.

“I have been reaching out to several non-profit organizations,” said Daniels. “So far, I have spoken with the Louisiana Lupus Foundation. I’m hoping to hold my own lupus walk. I do a lot of different appearances to try to give back to the community as much as I can.”