Cold weather can worsen joint pain, especially with injured joints. Joint pain during the winter can be caused by changes in barometric pressure and inactivity from being stuck indoors. The cold temperatures can also thicken joint fluid and heighten nerve sensitivity affected by inflammation and scarring. There are a few things you can do to minimize these effects. Here are three tips to help you relieve winter joint pain.
Alleviate Winter Joint Pain with Exercise
The winter weather can cause you to become more inactive from staying home often. This inactivity can cause an increase in joint pain levels from decreased joint mobility. Make it a habit to stretch and exercise daily to alleviate winter joint pain. There are many free workouts you can find and try online. Stretching will help keep your joints flexible so they stiffen less as you get older.
Keep Your Joints Flexible by Dressing in Layers
Your joints are more likely to feel aches and pains when your body temperature drops during the winter. By dressing in layers, you can stay warm and flexible to help reduce winter joint pain. If you get too warm, you can always remove a layer or two temporarily. During extreme temperatures, wear a thermal layer like long johns under your clothes to keep your joint fluids flowing freely.
Apply Heat to Relieve Winter Joint Pain
Applying moist heat can relieve winter joint pain. You can use a heating pad on covered skin for no more than 20 minutes to help loosen stiff joints. If you have damaged nerves, you should use a heating pad or heat pack for 10 minutes or less. Applying a heating pad for longer periods can lead to further nerve damage and skin burns. A warm bath filled with Epsom salts can also be beneficial to relieve winter joint pain.
Get Long-Lasting Relief from Winter Joint Pain
If you suffer from winter joint pain, there are treatment options available to help give you long-lasting relief. At Allied Pain & Spine Institute, we understand how chronic pain can impact every aspect of your life. We offer a number of pain management treatments to help you reduce the impact of winter joint pain. Call us today to book a consultation.
Posted on behalf of Dr. James Petros, Allied Pain & Spine Institute