Winter weather is often to blame for arthritis pain. While cold weather does not cause arthritis, it can exacerbate it. This pain occurs because your body is more sensitive to pain when it gets cold. The cold slows blood circulation and can cause muscle spasms, according to the Arthritis Foundation.
What helps with arthritis in cold weather?
Stay warm and layer up Layer up with gloves to protect your hands and add extra layers to knees, elbows or other achy sites. If it gets too warm, you can always peel those layers off one by one. Swimming in a heated pool or soaking in a hot tub can also provide relief from the discomfort of cold weather.
What weather makes arthritis worse?
Many people with arthritis feel worsening symptoms before and during rainy days. A drop in pressure often precedes cold, rainy weather. This drop in pressure may cause already inflamed tissue to expand, leading to increased pain.
Can a cold cause arthritis to flare up?
Infection. Being sick ‚Äî say, with a cold, flu, or COVID-19 ‚Äî can bring on flares in people with inflammatory arthritis.
Why is arthritis so painful in cold weather Related Questions
What is the best climate for arthritis?
Just as the effects of weather vary, the best climate may not be the same for all people. But based on research, it appears that for most people with arthritis, a warmer, drier climate may be optimal, such as that in parts of Texas, Arizona, Nevada and the Eastern Sierra region of California.
What time of year is arthritis worse?
Studies suggest autumn may be the sweet spot for RA while winter and spring are the most challenging. A recent study found that humidity made pain worse, especially in colder weather.
Which is better for arthritis heat or cold?
For an acute injury, such as a pulled muscle or injured tendon, the usual recommendation is to start by applying ice to reduce inflammation and dull pain. Once inflammation has gone down, heat can be used to ease stiffness. For a chronic pain condition, such as osteoarthritis, heat seems to work best.
How do you keep arthritic joints warm?
Keep your joints warm ‘Keeping joints warm may help alleviate pain as warmth relaxes muscles and reduces stiffness,’ says Dr McClymont. Warm showers and baths, heating pads, electric blankets and covering joints with gloves or even wrapping hands around hot drinks can all help with keeping your pain at bay in winter.
Does arthritis hurt all the time?
Pain from arthritis can be constant or it may come and go. It may occur when at rest or while moving. Pain may be in one part of the body or in many different parts. Some types of arthritis cause the skin over the affected joint to become red and swollen, feeling warm to the touch.
Does a heating pad make arthritis worse?
Heat and cold therapy may help ease arthritis symptoms. Heat therapy increases blood flow and may help to soothe stiff joints. In contrast, cold therapy constricts blood vessels and may be useful in reducing stiffness and inflammation. People can alternate between heat and cold as necessary.
Why do you get arthritis flare ups?
‚ÄúOsteoarthritis often flares after overexertion of the joint or joints that are involved,‚Äù Dr. Ashany says. With OA, ‚Äúunexpected activity can stress out the joints and surrounding tissues and cause pain,‚Äù Dr. Bose says.
Why does arthritis hurt more at night?
Lying down can cause inflammatory chemicals to pool in the fluid that cushions your joints, which makes them stiffen up. And your perception of pain may be heightened during the nighttime because you’re not distracted by anything else.
How do you calm an arthritis flare up?
Hot and cold compresses can help ease the pain of an arthritis flare. Heat soothes joint pain by increasing blood flow to the painful area and relaxing the muscles. Cold eases inflammation by constricting the blood vessels.
What is the best pain medication for severe arthritis?
NSAIDs are the most effective oral medicines for OA. They include ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) naproxen (Aleve) and diclofenac (Voltaren, others). All work by blocking enzymes that cause pain and swelling.
Does arthritis go away with exercise?
If you have arthritis, participating in joint-friendly physical activity can improve your arthritis pain, function, mood, and quality of life. Joint-friendly physical activities are low-impact, which means they put less stress on the body, reducing the risk of injury.
What weather helps arthritis pain?
According to Professor Karen Walker-Bone, professor of occupational rheumatology at the University of Southampton, people with osteoarthritis generally prefer warm and dry weather, while those with rheumatoid arthritis tend to prefer the cooler weather.
Which is worse for arthritis cold or humidity?
The second study included more than 800 adults living in one of six European countries and who had osteoarthritis of the hip, knee, or hands. Although changes in weather did not seem to affect symptoms, higher humidity was linked with increasing pain and stiffness, especially in colder weather.
Does heat help arthritis pain?
Use of heat, such as applying heating pads to aching joints, taking hot baths or showers, or immersing painful joints in warm paraffin wax, can help relieve pain temporarily. Be careful not to burn yourself. Use heating pads for no more than 20 minutes at a time.
What is the life expectancy of arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis and Lifespan In the study, the median survival rate for healthy adults was approximately 82 years while the median survival rate for people with RA was approximately 77 years.
What age does arthritis get bad?
It most often develops in people in their mid-40s or older. It’s also more common in women and people with a family history of the condition. But it can occur at any age as a result of an injury or be associated with other joint-related conditions, such as gout or rheumatoid arthritis.