With winter in full swing, cold weather discomfort and arthritis may be inconvenient and have an impact on your quality of life. A cold does not cause arthritis, but it might worsen joint discomfort, according to the Arthritis Foundation. Here are some excellent suggestions for dealing with arthritis discomfort throughout the winter months.
If you have osteoarthritis, wear shoes that have adequate insulation and avoid going barefoot on cold floors. Ask your doctor if medications can help reduce pain and inflammation from cold temperatures. If you get sick often during flu season, consider getting a flu shot. The vaccine protects people against four types of influenza: swine, human-avian, human-swine and untypeable. Get vaccinated yearly because there is no guarantee which strain of the virus will show up in the annual vaccination.
People with rheumatoid arthritis should take special precautions when walking on cold floors. The disease causes your immune system to attack healthy tissue in your body, including bone and muscle. This aggressive behavior can result in serious long-term problems if you aren't careful. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis should see a physician who can assess their risk for fractures and recommend protective measures such as medication changes or bone-protecting agents.
For patients with osteoarthritis or other forms of arthritis, avoiding cold floors may mean finding other ways to keep your feet warm.
The virus that causes the common cold can reach your joints through the skin. This can happen when you touch something with a dirty surface-such as a doorknob or elevator button-and then put your hand in your pocket or bag. The virus may also come into contact with your synovial fluid, which nourishes and lubricates your joints.
The foundation says that if you have arthritis, it is important to keep your hands and feet warm during cold weather so they do not aggravate your condition. Wearing gloves or keeping shoes with socks will help keep your limbs warm while still allowing them to function properly.
If you are already suffering from cold symptoms such as a fever or cough, ask your doctor if you should be wearing gloves or masks to protect others from touching your face. Your physician might suggest an anti-viral drug to reduce your risk of contracting arthritis-related viruses such as the flu.
It is important to stay hydrated during cold weather. If you are drinking alcohol, try to do so in moderation.
Osteoarthritis, thyroid arthritis, arthritis following injury, and many more types of non-inflammatory arthritis exist. Cold temperature has been demonstrated in studies to have an effect on both inflammatory and non-inflammatory arthritis. Studies show that exposure to cold temperatures can increase your risk of developing arthritis later in life.
The connection between cold and arthritis may be due to changes that occur in the body when it is exposed to cold temperatures. The most common cause of arthritis is age. However, genetics also play a role in who will develop arthritis and when they will develop it. Environment also plays a role: physical activities, injuries, etc. that place stress on the joints can lead to arthritis eventually. Certain diseases also put you at risk for developing arthritis later in life. For example, people with diabetes are more likely to develop osteoarthritis of the knee than those without the disease.
Inflammatory arthritis is when there is damage done to joint tissues due to an autoimmune reaction or infection. Treatment for inflammatory arthritis depends on what type of arthritis you have. There are medications, surgery, and exercise can all be used to treat arthritis.
People with inflammatory arthritis should not go into cold temperatures because these could bring on symptoms such as pain, stiffness, and redness of the joint.
Warm, dry climates may make some arthritis sufferers feel better, but there is no such thing as an arthritis-free climate. Some arthritis patients may be more physiologically sensitive to variations in temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity than others. If you are one of them, try not to worry about it too much. Just make sure that your environment is comfortable to you.
The best way to deal with pain from arthritis is not just to take drugs, but to also prevent further damage to your joints. It's important to get regular exercise - even if you only do it once in a while - because it helps keep your muscles strong, which reduces your risk of injury. And don't forget about nutrition: eat foods that are good for your bones, like soy products and vegetables with lots of calcium, and avoid those that cause acid reflux or heartburn, like coffee and chocolate.
Also consider talking to your doctor about whether there are any other ways you can manage your pain. There are many different types of medications available that may help reduce joint pain from arthritis. Be sure to tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, since they may have interactions with each other. In addition, some doctors may suggest alternative methods for treating pain, such as physical therapy or injection therapies.
Finally, remember that life with arthritis isn't perfect, but it doesn't have to be terrible either.
People with arthritis frequently claim to be able to forecast the weather based on how their joints feel. Some people note that their pain and stiffness worsen during the cold and rainy winter months, while others discover that the hot and humid summer months aggravate their symptoms. Research studies have not confirmed this connection, but there are several reasons why your joint health might be affected by climate changes or fluctuations in temperature.
As you age, your body is less capable of maintaining a constant temperature, no matter what the weather is like. This is because aging cells don't function as efficiently as younger cells, so they aren't as effective at keeping cool when it's hot outside or warm when it's cold outside. Because arthritis causes pain and stiffness when temperatures change, your older body is likely to experience more frequent flare-ups if the weather is hot or cold.
Climate changes can also affect the way you feel after walking or standing for a long time. When the temperature is low, your blood flows toward the center of your body, causing your legs to feel cold. As we've already discussed, arthritis primarily affects the joints where pain and stiffness occur, so if you have osteoarthritis or some other form of arthritis, your legs will feel cold even though there is no actual damage to your bones.
The quality of your environment has an impact on your ability to fight off infections.