How many times have you dreaded that winter is coming and you will be experiencing seething arthritis pain? How many times has a bone-chilling cold caused you endless joint aches, swelling and stiffness? Winter weather can be harsh, especially to those living with arthritis, and there could be some truth to the tale that you can tell the weather changes through joint aches. There are two classifications of arthritis: inflammatory and non-inflammatory, and both are triggered by cold weather. An example of a non-infectious arthritis is rheumatoid arthritis. The cold weather does not cause arthritis; it only sets off the pain. Here are some simple tips to handle winter arthritis pain and help you maintain your quality of life even during the cold season.
Always Stay Warm
Of course, everyone should stay warm during this period, and for arthritis people keeping those stiff and aching joints warm will help relieve discomfort. Layer fingers up with gloves and add extra clothes to cover your elbow, knees, and any other part you feel pain. If the clothes get too warm, you can take them off and alternatively take a dip in a warm swimming pool or soak the painful parts in warm water. The warm swimming pool also does magic to the aching joints; therefore, you can also make it part of your routine since you will be exercising the aching muscles.
Maintain A Healthy Diet
Winter somehow collides with the holiday season. With festivities going on, you may find yourself overindulging in rich gravy, dessert and other processed meat. Such meals only accelerate the intensity of rheumatoid arthritis pain. Hence, you need to maintain a balanced diet. Additionally, ensure you avoid smoking and drinking, which may also cause arthritis pain to flare up. Also, taking a balanced diet helps with drug side effects and helps you avoid heart and blood conditions which may be some complications that may arise from arthritis.
Although no specific diet cures arthritis, you can maintain a proper diet and take supplements to contain it. Most people who have arthritis find that what they eat and how much they weigh accelerates the disease. Therefore you should watch what you eat to avoid being overweight. Before adjusting your diet, you should talk to your nutritionist for further advice. Maintaining a balanced diet all through will help you reduce the intense arthritis symptoms during winter.
Exercising is one of the best ways to deal with arthritis pain. Physical activities keep your muscles strong and help relieve the tension. Settling on a proper workout regimen can be difficult for people living with arthritis. You can work with low impact exercises such as;
- Riding a bicycle, and
- Swimming to help maintain bone density, which is essential for joints affected by arthritis.
Such exercises help with weight loss too. Being overweight places a lot of pressure on some muscles, thus instigating joint pains. Therefore, if you have arthritis, you may find that anytime you add weight, the pain also increases. Thus, exercising will help you maintain the right weight, which reduces tension on the arthritic joints and the pain.
If you are new to exercising, start slow, and it’s even better if you indulge a therapist and come up with a workout routine that favors your condition. Additionally, on top of exercising, ensure you get enough rest. Low sleep can cause fatigue which may cause more pain and depression in rheumatoid arthritis patients.
Avoid Soda And Sugary Stuff
Not only is soda full of empty calories, but the sugar can breed bacteria, leading to inflammation in the body. Substitute soda for lemon water, hot tea and other beverages that have low sugar. The inflammation also creates room for other infections. Thus, not only will you be worsening your arthritis pain, but also you will be opening your body to other infections.
Be More Open About Your Condition
Downplaying the pain is not a good idea. Therefore you need to speak up about your condition to your family, friends and doctor. The pain can sometimes cause anxiety and depression; therefore, it is better to talk about it, especially with your doctor, since they may adjust your medication when the pain intensifies. Also, letting your friends and family know of your pain and condition will let them know of your limitations and what to do in case of an emergency.
To deal with winter arthritis, you have to make lifestyle adjustments such as exercising, eating healthy and getting enough rest. Most of these remedies will help you contain the nagging arthritis pain that especially comes alive during the cold season. Arthritis pain can limit your ability to enjoy your normal activities and even ruin your festivities during the holidays; thus, you need to look for ways to contain the situation. Most importantly ensure you keep warm during the cold season.