What Causes Joint Pain During Winter?
While the winter season comes with its own allure, our joints do not feel the same way. For people who already suffer from joint issues such as arthritis, the weather accentuates these concerns causing stiffness and pain. Let's look at a few problems old man winter brings to your joints and how to get through with less pain.
Joint pain is associated with injuries or aging. During winter, joint pain can be felt in individuals who typically do not suffer pain any other time of the year, so why is that?
Low temperatures cause our bodies to experience muscle spasms, which can aggravate our joints and cause stiffness. During cold weather, the sensitivity of pain receptors in our bodies increases and Vitamin D levels fall due to less sun exposure, causing our joints and bones to weaken. In extreme weather conditions blood circulation to our extremities also decreases, causing swelling of our tissues which then causes tension and pain to our joints.
Tips to Manage Joint Pain During Winter
Here are a few simple things you can do to get through winter with less joint pain:
1. Dress in Warm Clothes
It is essential to keep your hands, feet and head warm. This is where the majority of our body heat escapes. As simple as it may be, it is extremely important to bundle up whether you are going outside for the mail or jumping in the car to run an errand.
2. Take Vitamin D Supplements
Maintaining Vitamin D levels is vital to ensure optimal health, especially during winter months. Vitamin D is also helpful to prevent osteoporosis and decreases your risk of fatigue and muscle pains. If you feel your Vitamin D levels are low, you could ask your doctor to prescribe some vitamin D supplements to aid in combatting joint pain.
3. Increase the Intake of Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are known to reduce inflammation in joints. Adding them to your diet can prevent your joints from becoming stiff. Consume foods like fish, walnuts, flaxseeds, and avocados rich in Omega-3 fatty acids to assist in battling joint pain during winter.
4. Exercise Regularly
Winter can make us lazy. It is not fun to keep our bodies moving in cold weather, however it is essential to maintain regular exercise during the winter months. You want to maintain strong bones and muscle strength and also maintain a good body weight which reduces pressure on your joints. Do your body some good by stretching and staying active during the winter months.
5. Know When to Call the Doctor
If your joint pain is persistent, increases and/or becomes unbearable it is important to seek medical attention. Premier Orthopaedic Associates specializes in providing effective treatment from DISCOVERY to RECOVERY. Seeing an orthopaedic specialist does not always mean that you will need surgery. In most cases, our Providers can get you back to the life you deserve with pain management techniques or physical therapy. To make an appointment call or text 856.690.1616 or schedule an appointment online.