The cold can change how we feel in our bodies and what we feel able to do on a daily basis.
When the weather is cold, everything feels a little different than it does when the sun is blazing and the air is warm. When it comes to joints, many people who experience pain in these areas report that they notice a meaningful difference when the weather is colder. Whether it be because of differences in air pressure that take place in the cold-weather months, or whether it is the chill in the air itself that causes a change, fall and winter can be more challenging times for seniors’ joint pain.
Managing Joint Pain
For Ottawa seniors who experience joint pain, there are some considerations and strategies specific to the cold-weather months that can help to mitigate their pain and make movement a little more comfortable.
- Keep Moving: Making sure that some degree of movement or exercise is a part of seniors’ everyday lives is important all year round, but can be especially helpful for helping to deal with joint pain. Keeping active and moving around can help to keep the body more flexible and loosen joints that are experiencing pain and stiffness. There are a whole host of accessible exercises for seniors that can take place indoors when venturing out in the cold seems unmanageable. Even something as simple as a little stroll can help make a difference.
- Eat Well: A healthy diet is always important for overall health and wellbeing, but making sure that seniors consume important nutrients, minerals, vitamins, proteins, and fibers that help to keep the body in balance can also help to reduce inflammation and therefore manage joint pain from within.
- Get Vitamin D: Here is Canada, it is often a great deal more difficult to get ample vitamin D when the weather is cold. Supplementing Vitamin D or making conscious food choices to ensure that seniors and getting enough can help to manage joint pain in the fall and winter.
- Bundle Up: Heading outside and venturing into the cold can feel more challenging when joint pain is a factor, because exposure to the cold temperature can intensify the pain. Making sure to bundle up in layers and dress appropriately for the weather can make going outside in the cold much easier and less stressful on the joints. Joint pain shouldn’t prevent seniors from heading outside or enjoying the outdoors when the weather is colder, they just need to make sure they are well covered and wear clothes and layers that will keep them and their joints warm.
- Heat Things Up: Heating joints that are experiencing pain with things like hot water bottles, hot compresses, heating pads, or warm baths can help to ease sore joints and make seniors more comfortable. The heat and warmth can be comforting in the cold and can help to reduce the intensity of joint pain.
Sore joints can have a major impact on the level of comfort that seniors experience in the cold-weather months, so making sure to tend to the problems before they begin to inhibit seniors’ lives is important. With a few purposeful strategies and considerations in mind, Ottawa seniors can continue to enjoy the fall and winter despite troubles they may encounter with their joints.