By Jeff Sheppard 10 Nov 2020 no comment 1039 Views

If you feel like you’re experiencing more aches and pains now that the weather is getting colder, you’re not alone.

It’s not just a myth – cold weather can make you feel stiffer.  It can also increase your likelihood of a musculoskeletal injury.

While this is true for everyone, two kinds of people are particularly at risk.

If you live with an arthritic condition such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, you may find that your symptoms worsen when it is cold out.  Your symptoms may also react to sudden changes in the weather or atmospheric pressure.

Or, if you work outside, you’re using stiffer, tenser muscles every day at your job.

But very few of us have the luxury of hibernating all winter long – and why would we want to?  Most of us want to get out for fresh air and a change of scenery, and all of us have to go out sometimes for groceries and errands.

Follow these tips to stay safe when you’re active in cold weather.

Dress warmly.  Protect your body from the cold, and your muscles will feel less stiff and tense.  Wear a hat that covers your ears.  Mittens will keep your fingers warmer than gloves, but some jobs might require the increased flexibility of gloves.

Wear boots designed for winter weather.  Avoid “fashion” footwear in favour of boots that are waterproof, warm, and have good treads to help you keep your balance on snow and ice.  A quality pair of boots is well worth the investment.

Stay active.  If you aren’t exercising your muscles and joints, you will feel “seized up” – in addition to the other negative consequences of not getting enough exercise.  When the weather outside is frightful, try riding an exercise bike in front of the TV.

Avoid long periods of time out in the cold.  If you work outside, move indoors during your breaks if you can.  If you’re shoveling out the driveway, come inside and warm up before going back out to do some more.  If you’re walking around the neighbourhood for exercise, try two or three shorter walks at different times rather than one long hike.

Visit your chiropractor.  We can help manage pain resulting from arthritis.  We can treat those aches and pains.  We will keep your body working at its best, which will help to minimize your risk of injury.

If we haven’t seen you in some time, call Sheppard Chiropractic Centre at (506) 635-8182 or (506) 847-7172 for an appointment.

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