Winter weather hit Tampa last week with low temperatures and rainy skies. The lobby of Bay City Chiropractic in Tampa could have been used as a forecast, full of patients with aching joints. Palmer graduate, Dr. Scott Barry, receives many questions from patients on why their neck pan, back pain, knee pain and other joints worsen when it is rainy.
“ Many people can predict the weather with an aching joint ” Dr. Barry explained, “the correlationbetween joint pain in Tampa and weather is the change in barometric pressure”.
Barometric pressure or air pressure is the weight of the atmosphere that surrounds us. When rain and a cold front approaches the pressure drops significantly and many people report joint pain. Injured and arthritic joints usually have associated inflammation in the joint. Barometric pressure expands the extra fluid, which can result in pain and discomfort.
Think of a joint as a balloon under pressure from the external environment. When the pressure decreases outside when a storm approaches then the balloon expands, causing pressure on surrounding nerves and pain. Many conditions are sensitive to changing weather conditions: musculoskeletal disorders, osteoarthritis, tension headaches, back pain and fibromyalgia.
Numerous studies have tried to document this phenomenon. The Journal of Spinal Disorders and Techniques published a study in a 2002 that showed "back pain may be aggravated by atmosphere depression in patients with lumbar disc disease." Then in 2007 the American Journal of Medicine contained a study revealing, "Changes in barometric pressure are independently associated with osteoarthritis knee pain severity."
Chiropractic Care and Rehab Therapy encourages joint motion and reduces inflammation. Injured and arthritic changes can be addressed with various manual therapies, chiropractic adjustments, acupuncture, massage therapy, exercise and various rehab devices offered at Bay City Chiropractic.
The Chiropractors, Acupuncture Physicians and staff at Bay City Chiropractic in Tampa are available to help with your joint pain during good and bad weather. Why wait until a looming storm has your joints aching. Make an appointment to help improve your joint function and reduce inflammation so when a storm approaches you only worry about getting wet.