Have you ever heard someone say their “knees were acting up” because there was a storm on the way? Have you wondered why some people believe the weather affects their joints, bones, or physical movements? Well, there is something to be said for this theory, since atmospheric pressure, also known as barometric pressure, can indeed affect our joints, and is directly impacted by changes in the weather.
Barometric pressure is the amount of weight exerted by the atmosphere onto our surroundings. Changes in barometric pressure have been shown to trigger joint pain, headaches, and other physical problems.
This can be the case in situations where low barometric pressure is established, such as during a storm, right before a storm, or in environments with fluctuating temperatures. High altitudes which also create low barometric pressure can cause people to suffer from light headedness, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, headache and other problems.
In cases of high humidity, excess moisture content in the air can decrease the amount of barometric pressure, too. This can cause the body’s tendons, muscles, and ligaments to expand. This expansion can irritate those who have preexisting conditions, such as arthritis.
Can Dehydration Cause Joint Pain?
High humidity can also affect the body when we sweat, as high humidity is often associated with high temperatures. When it is hot and humid out, as it typically is in Chicago during the summer months, our bodies produce sweat to help keep us cool. When the air is already heavy with moisture, it prevents the sweat from evaporating quickly, so we continue sweating because our bodies are trying to cool off without success; this can lead to dehydration.
Joint cartilage and spinal discs contain fluid, and so when we become dehydrated, the concentration of fluid can decrease. This lessens the cushion surrounding discs and joints which normally protect them, and therefore agitates arthritis or injuries which may be present.
How A Chiropractor in Chicago, IL Can Help
There are a few ways to combat the negative effects of humidity and atmospheric pressure on our joints. When it comes to the heat, drinking more water is key to preventing dehydration and its negative effects. As for the results of fluctuating barometric pressure, therapy for joint pain and safe, low impact exercises such as swimming, can be wonderful treatment methods.
In order to reduce inflammation, chronic pain, joint stiffness, swelling, and other physical issues which might be affected by the weather, visiting a chiropractor can make a world of difference in your daily life. Treatment methods like deep tissue therapy and spinal decompression have been shown to improve body function, quality of life, provide pain relief, decrease muscle tension, and more.
Physical Therapy in Chicago’s Loop
At Chicago Chiropractic & Sports Injury Centers, we offer a number of therapeutic treatment plans, from acupuncture to massage therapy in the Loop. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at one of our Chicagoland locations.