The snow and cold weather that typically affects New Jersey is certain to affect everyone differently. A few people embrace it. Other people get moody. A good percentage of others simply complain and wait for it to pass. But the reaction of people with arthritis can be more joint pain.
Unfortunately, far too many people are likely to have this reaction in wintertime. After all, researchers report that 63 million Americans will have doctor-diagnosed arthritis by 2020. A physical therapy specialist can help you find effective treatment for arthritis. They can even develop a physical therapy plan that can reduce your pain when it’s cold out.
Why is arthritis treatment more necessary in the winter?
You have probably heard that cold or rainy weather can increase arthritis symptoms. Many people with arthritis even claim that their joint pain can predict cold weather or rain.
One leading theory as to why this increase occurs is that as the weather changes and the pressure drops, tissues that surround joints expand slightly. This puts extra pressure on joints and leads to pain. It’s also been hypothesized that cold thickens the synovial fluid that lubricates joints. In turn, this can make joints more susceptible to pain.
Other medical professionals believe that it may be a more indirect effect of the weather. They think that cold temperatures lead to shivering, tightening up and less physical activity. In turn, these issues are the catalyst of increased arthritis symptoms.
All these issues can make arthritis symptoms worse, even though the weather itself doesn’t increase pain and stiffness directly. They can also make arthritis treatment much more necessary.
How can a physical therapist help you treat arthritis in the winter?
For anyone with arthritis who does experience worse symptoms in the cold, the reasoning behind it doesn’t matter so much as the fact that it happens. A physical therapist can take steps to help treat your arthritis symptoms when it’s cold.
Some ways these specialists can help you include:
Performing manual therapy techniques to stretch out and move stiff joints
Prescribing muscle-strengthening exercises to build up joints that have been weakened by damage or inflammation from arthritis
Teaching you techniques to help you perform daily activities with the best possible posture and body mechanics
Creating a regular exercise plan that allows you to stay active throughout the colder months
Encouraging you to use your exercise plan before going outdoors
Instructing you on the use of heating pads and other warming agents for painful joints
Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation offers arthritis treatment
Do your arthritis symptoms get worse when it’s cold? Our team at Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation can help you find effective treatment for your arthritis at any time of the year.
We offer free screenings designed to reveal how arthritis is affecting your body. Our physical therapists can also build you a therapy plan that’s personalized to your needs and designed to reduce your symptoms. We can even help you avoid going out into the cold to see us thanks to our virtual therapy and at-home care services.
Contact our team today for more information about how we can help treat your arthritis symptoms or to schedule an initial appointment.