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January 25, 2021

How can a physical therapist help you treat arthritis during a cold season?


During the winter season, joint pains and stiffened muscles are the most common health problem plaguing the lives of older people. There is a 50 percent spike in the number of old age seeking treatment for bone and joint problems during winter. For many Rheumatoid arthritis patients, pain, swelling, stiffness, fatigue and other common rheumatoid arthritis symptoms are harder to control during the winter. Some people feel more joint pain, as the cold weather sets in.


Here are a few reasons why arthritis pain gets worst during winter:


arthritis pain


  • The pain receptors become more sensitive during the winters.

  • The drop in atmospheric pressure causes painful joints. When the pressure decreases, tissues swell, building tension between joints, causing pain.

  • There are more muscle spasms in colder temperatures, which worsens the pain and stiffness of the joints.

  • The cold reduces the blood circulation to the fingers and toes, which amplifies arthritis pain.

  • Less sunlight during winters means lower vitamin D levels and leads to weakened bones and joints.


What Are the Goals of Physical Therapy? 


For arthritis, goals typically include: 

  • Improving the mobility and restoring the use of affected joints,  

  • Increasing strength to support the joints,  

  • Maintaining fitness, 

  • Preserving the ability to perform daily activities.  


Physical Therapy for Arthritis


For anyone with arthritis who does experience worse symptoms in the cold, the reasoning behind it doesn’t matter so much as the fact that it happens. A physical therapist can take steps to help treat your arthritis symptoms when it’s cold. 

Some ways these specialists can help you include: 

Performing manual therapy techniques to stretch out and move stiff joints

Prescribing muscle-strengthening exercises to build up joints that have been weakened by damage or inflammation from arthritis

Teaching you techniques to help you perform daily activities with the best possible posture and body mechanics

Creating a regular exercise plan that allows you to stay active throughout the colder months

Encouraging you to use your exercise plan before going outdoors

Instructing you on the use of heating pads and other warming agents for painful joints


Health Plus Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Center, Edison, NJ offers arthritis treatment


Do your arthritis symptoms get worse when it’s cold? Our team at Health Plus Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Center can help you find an effective treatment for your arthritis

Health Plus PT Screening and reveal how arthritis is affecting your body. Our PT can also build you a personalized therapy plan to your needs and designed to reduce your symptoms.

Contact us today for more information about how we can help treat your arthritis symptoms or to schedule an initial appointment.

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