Cold vs Pain
Farewell summer, you didn’t last very long! Out come our winter overcoats and scarfs! Sadly for many, the cold weather is not a welcome thing.
Did you know: Those who suffer with chronic back pain might notice it get worse during autumn and winter.
Although there’s little scientific evidence that shows a link between chronic pain and humidity, temperature changes and wind speed, weather changes can affect those, who suffer with joint pain conditions, especially arthritis and osteoarthritis.
The most commonly accepted reasoning is that with colder temperatures comes lower air pressure, that can cause joint tissues to expand—further worsening joints already prone to swelling and tenderness.
Alongside your regular musculoskeletal treatment, there are easy and effective things you can do to supplement your treatments; helping you get out of pain during cold spells.
If cold weather increases your aches and pain, you can help to ease it with these four simple steps:
- Heat Therapy
Including heat therapy in your daily routine can help to reduce stiffness and boost healing through increased blood circulation. Try applying a warm towel or a heating pad to your painful area for about 20 minutes for temporary pain relief. You can also go for over-the-counter heat wraps
- Water Therapy
If you like swimming, try to visit heated indoor pool with hot baths/Jacuzzis. Try and incorporate saunas a few times a week for an almost instant relief from pain! The heat of the sauna will also have a big boost on your mood too.
- Stay as active as you can
As tempting as it is to just stay on the sofa catching up on the latest drama during winter evenings, it is crucial to keep your spine mobile by staying active. Try not to sit down constantly throughout the day – get up as often as possible for a short walk and a stretch – ideally every 20-30 minutes. If your pain is too severe to go to the gym, consider going for walks with hiking poles or try gentle Pilates at home. Movement is key!
- Supplement your musculoskeletal treatments with massages
If your fourth layer of clothing doesn’t do much to warm you up, massage can be a great addition to your toolkit when it gets colder. Not only is it nice to treat yourself, but massage will help to boost your circulation and lymphatic system, assisting your body to warm up. It will help to ease any areas of your body that are stiff or inflamed. Massage also has the added benefit of relaxing muscles, which in turn makes Chiropractic treatment more effective.
No two people are the same, and this isn’t a ‘one size fit all’ approach. If your Chiropractor or Physiotherapist suggests modified versions of the above, then please follow their advice.
If you’d would like to find out more about how we can help you during the autumn and winter months, please contact us on 020 7531 4444 or visit our website at drcandicedugmorechiropractor.co.za