Some people don’t need the weather app to know a storm is coming. Instead, they claim to “feel it in their bones.” They begin to experience aches in their joints that they attribute to the changing weather. It may seem like a ridiculous notion, but is there any truth to it?
How weather affects joints
There have been studies on the connection between joint pain and weather. However, none have been able to successfully explain the connection because their test subject pools were too small to determine the definite existence of a link.
Although there are no clear scientific links, there are a few theories. The first has to do with barometric pressure, or the weight the atmosphere puts on our bodies. The theory asserts that high barometric pressure pushes against the body and prevents its tissues from expanding normally. When bad weather comes in and barometric pressure drops, the low air pressure allows tissues to expand, compresses joints, and causes pain. That pain is a natural alarm.
Another theory is that the aches and pains arise because poor weather does not allow for much movement. Sheltering indoors can cause an individual to abandon routine physical activity. This could result in joints becoming stiff and painful, giving them the belief that the weather is to blame for their joint pain.
Keeping your joints comfortable
Although it can be tempting to pack up and leave to a warmer location when your joints begin acting up, it is not the most practical solution. Instead, here are some tips that you can use to protect your joints during weather changes.
- Keep moving. When you begin to experience pain, it’s easy to give in to the desire to rest, however, that could potentially make the stiffness worse. Walking and stretching periodically will help ease discomfort.
- Focus on nutrition. A healthy diet can work wonders for joint health. Omega-3 fatty acids, seeds, and nuts can help reduce inflammation in the joints.
- Layers. Keeping warm during winter weather can help keep joints limber. Using a compression sleeve around the knees and ankles is also effective in relieving achiness.
- Try cold compresses. Heating pads are nice, especially when it gets cold outside, but they are not necessarily the best tool for soothing joint pain. When a joint is swollen, a cold compress is more effective in reducing inflammation.
We hope this information on your joints and the weather is helpful to you.
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Kayla is a graduate of Texas A&M University and joined the marketing team at Empower Brokerage in early 2021. She creates content for the company websites and assists with various marketing campaigns. LinkedIn Profile