Arthritis hurts. The cold makes arthritis worse by restricting the amount of blood your extremities get, using that extra blood to insulate vital organs like the heart and lungs. This can also lead to stiff and hard joints that can limit movement in addition to causing increased pain. Oklahoma Pain Treatment Centers has a few tips to mitigate or even prevent these cold-fueled symptoms.
1.) Stay hydrated: Besides being a generally good rule of thumb, staying hydrated may reduce your sensitivity to pain – or rather, being dehydrated can increase your sensitivity to pain.
2.) Dress warmly and layer up: Insulating your body from the cold is an effective way to keep the cold from affecting you. Your body won’t start restricting blood flow if it doesn’t feel cold. Wearing extra clothing over the parts of your body the suffer from arthritis (gloves for hands, leggings for legs, etc) can help, as well. If you live in an area with high temperature swings, dressing in layers can help you avoid overheating.
3.) Get a massage: Go ahead, indulge yourself for the sake of your health! Studies show that getting a massage once a week for eight weeks may actually reduce the pain felt from arthritis.
4.) Exercise inside: Exercise will keep your joints supple and is one of the best ways to reduce chronic arthritis pain. However, this can get harder in the fall and winter with the cold adding extra pain and tension on joints. If you can’t workout outside, consider getting a gym membership or setting up a home gym so you can exercise in the comfort, and heat, of your own home or the gym.
Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong – don’t ignore it! If you’re in pain, call Oklahoma Pain Treatment Centers today at 405-751-0011 and schedule an appointment!