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How to Manage Joint Pain in Cold Weather

How to Manage Joint Pain in Cold Weather

If you suffer from arthritis or joint pain, winter can take a real toll on your body and motivation. Pain can make it feel like everything requires 10x the effort and just the thought of going outside can be torture. This doesn’t have to be the case! There are many ways to manage your pain when the cold hits.

Keep Warm

A girl has a wamr clothes outside

If you have to head out into the cold make sure you keep warm by wearing layers. If you’re feeling a chill while indoors use an electric blanket, heating pad or take a warm shower or bath. Staying warm is one of the main ways to battle the pain that comes with colder temperatures.

Talk to Your Doctor About Joint Pain

Talking to a doctor abour joint pain

If this is the first time you’ve experienced joint pain, or the pain has recently increased make sure you talk to your doctor and get a diagnosis. Different conditions can require different treatments so it’s best to discuss your diagnosis with your doctor. You may be prescribed NSAIDs, physiotherapy, or other conservative methods.

Eat Healthily

A girl is having an healthy meal

Not only does healthy eating help manage inflammation but proper diet and exercise help maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight can seriously impact your joints and the amount of pain you may experience from issues like arthritis, so maintaining a healthy weight is an essential paint management tool all year round.

Stay Hydrated

A girl is drinkig water

Not drinking enough water impacts many important aspects of your health but without enough water, your muscles can lose some of their flexibility resulting in stiffness and an increased chance of injury.

Make a Plan With Your Physiotherapist

A guy is making a plan with his physiotherapist

Physiotherapists are essential members of your healthcare team – when you struggle with joint pain or arthritis they can be one of the best resources to help you manage your pain and mobility. Before the colder months creep in, schedule an appointment with Willow Park Physio and create a cold-weather plan for maintaining your mobility and managing your pain in the winter months. Your plan may include regular physiotherapy visits for evaluation and manual therapy, targeted exercise programs for strength and flexibility, taping or a combination. Don’t worry, if you’re snowed in or can’t venture out in the dead of winter, you can book virtual physiotherapy appointments where your physiotherapist can talk you through homecare and exercise programs.

Supplement

Supplements

Many supplements can be important for maintaining your health and your mood during darker months. Vitamin D is harder to get with the shorter days of winter so it’s important to get your levels tested and supplement with vitamin D for increased mood, and pain management, as well as overall health.

There are lots of supplements that are great for managing inflammation, talk to your doctor or naturopathic doctor about supplementing with Omega 3s, Curcumin, and/or Glucosamine all of which have been shown to help with joints and inflammation.

Keep Moving

A girl is walking on snow

You’re in pain, so the last thing you may feel like doing is getting up and moving. However, physical activity is not only important for maintaining a healthy weight, but it increases blood flow which helps with joint stiffness. A sedentary lifestyle can also contribute to swelling and fluid build-up around the affected joints. There are many joint-friendly ways of staying active while staying warm indoors such as riding a stationary bike, yoga or swimming in a heated pool. Another benefit? Building muscle around painful joints can help support them which can help with the pain.

If you do choose to get moving outdoors, make sure you warm-up and do lots of dynamic stretching before heading outside. Cold muscles are more prone to pain and injury so get that blood flowing before attempting a walk in that winter wonderland.

Get a Massage

A girl is having a massage

Massage is highly effective in managing arthritis pain by relieving tension. Booking a massage at Robichaud Chiropractic & Orthotics can help relieve stiffness, assist with lymph drainage and swelling, and improve overall circulation to the area.

If you struggle with arthritis or joint pain and the winter months are particularly painful for you, know your options. There are many ways that you can manage your pain through lifestyle changes or by visiting a physiotherapist or massage therapist. Knowing how to manage your joint pain and arthritis in the winter months can also mean less injury!

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