How many times have you thought a storm was on the way because your arthritis pain was becoming worse? In the United States, arthritis affects millions of people. Arthritis in the winter amplifies aches and pains.
Arthritis is a condition that causes one or more joints to enlarge and become painful. The most frequent symptoms of arthritis are joint pain and stiffness, which often worsen with age.
The most common types of arthritis include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Is arthritis worse in the winter?
Cold temperature has been demonstrated to affect both inflammatory and non-inflammatory arthritis in studies.
In a typical winter season, weather pain and arthritis can be inconvenient and have a negative impact on your quality of life. According to the Arthritis Foundation, the cold temperature does not cause arthritis. However, it can exacerbate joint pain.
Why is arthritis pain when it's cold?
A shift in barometric pressure, rather than snow, cold, or rain, has been found to be the cause of greater discomfort in studies.
At any given position, barometric pressure (atmospheric pressure) is the force exerted on a surface by the weight of the atmosphere. The barometric pressure begins to fall like a storm system forms.
The body's tissues may enlarge as the barometric pressure drops. Nerves that control pain signals are put under additional pressure as tissues expand.
Symptoms of Arthritis
There are various types of arthritis, and each has its own set of symptoms.
Some people experience moderate symptoms, while others experience severe symptoms. Joint discomfort may come and go, or it may be chronic for a long time. Among the most common signs and symptoms are:
- Pain and redness
Here are a few useful tips in dealing with arthritis in the winter.
Tips for dealing with arthritis pain in the winter
Suffering from arthritis can affect your day-to-day activities. These simple tips can still help in managing your aching joints.
Eat a healthy diet
Some patients with rheumatoid arthritis may experience a flare-up after overindulging rich and sugary foods over the holidays. The holidays are particularly hard due to the abundance of pastries, heavy gravy, processed meats, and other foods.
Moreover, poor eating choices raise the likelihood of developing additional health problems such as osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. Make sure to eat a balanced diet and avoid anything that might cause your arthritis pain to worsen.
Taking a warm bath in the winter is one of the most relaxing activities. According to the Arthritis Foundation, taking a warm bath can bring relief to arthritis sufferers.
Warm baths can assist in relaxing your muscles and make you feel more at ease. Just make sure you don't step into the cold immediately after taking a bath. After taking a hot bath, your body requires some time to return to normal temperature. Before you leave the bathroom, be sure you have adequately covered yourself. Warm compresses, on the other hand, can be used to alleviate joint discomfort that has become more severe.
Take advantage of a massage.
Researchers from The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine published a study in June 2015 that found that receiving massages at least once a week for at least eight weeks can aid in the relaxation of the muscles around joint pain concerns. The benefits of increasing the frequency with which we treat our bodies with a rub down will be even more apparent throughout the winter months.
Exercise is often regarded as the single most effective non-drug treatment for osteoarthritis patients in terms of reducing joint pain and enhancing movement in their joints.
Exercise is an important method for relieving pain, increasing energy, and strengthening muscles. All of which contribute to better joint support. Winter can present a variety of challenges when it comes to getting outside for exercise.
Yoga, indoor cycling, aerobics, free weights, and walking or jogging on a treadmill are all examples of indoor fitness possibilities.
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends that adults with arthritis who do not have any other serious health issues engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week and two strength-training sessions per week. Don't forget to consult with your health practitioner before starting any fitness regimen, especially if you are experiencing pain when exercising or if you have been sedentary for an extended length of time.
This is an important step in any season. Drinking plenty of water can help you avoid muscle cramps, maintain a healthy immune system, and even prevent other diseases. Drinking water from time to time can encourage you to be more physically active.
Also, even mild dehydration might make you more sensitive to pain, so make sure you are drinking enough water to ensure that your body is hydrated. In addition to drinking water, you can include chicken soups, bone broth, vegetable soups, bone broth, and other hydrating foods in your diet to keep your hydration levels under control.
Make sure you have enough Vitamin D.
Having low levels of Vitamin D in your body might make you more sensitive to pain, which is especially true in the winter.
Osteoporosis is another condition that's a result of a lack of vitamin D. It is recommended that you spend some time outside in the sunshine. Anything from 15 minutes to half an hour will assist your body in synthesizing a small quantity of the vitamin D found in sunlight.
In addition, you might choose to take supplements, but only under the supervision of your physician.
Is it true that particular sorts of weather worsen arthritis?
Some patients report that their arthritis symptoms worsen during particular weather conditions. Humidity and cold are two of the most common factors that cause joint pain.
The causes behind this could be for a range of different reasons. People are less active during the rainy season and during the winter months. Cold and damp weather can also cause joint stiffness and worsening arthritis.
If you notice that certain types of weather make your arthritis symptoms worse, speak with your healthcare practitioner about the best strategies to manage your symptoms during these times. Dressing warmly, exercising indoors, or using heat therapy may all be effective ways to reduce your discomfort.
Living with arthritis
At present, there's still no cure for arthritis. As such, the majority of people will have to manage their arthritis for the rest of their lives. Your doctor can assist you in figuring out the most effective mix of treatments to alleviate your symptoms.
One of the most serious health risks associated with arthritis is a lack of physical exercise. If you become sedentary as a result of joint discomfort, you may increase your chances of developing cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other serious disorders.
If you need a virtual consultation about your heart health today, feel free to reach out to me for a telehealth consultation.