The fall rains are beginning and in addition to the beautiful scenery and many colored leaves, you may find yourself noticing an increase or intensification in your joint pain. If a grandmother has claimed to be able to “sense” when it’s going to rain by the feeling that they get either in their sinuses or the pain that they experience in their joints, it’s not just an old wives’ tale. In fact, weather-related joint pain has science to back it up.

Any weight-bearing joint can be affected and feel pain. Typically, pain is felt in the hips, knees, elbows, shoulders and hands. But do you know why? The body's joints have sensory nerves. These nerves that are like pressure receptors and they respond to changes in the atmosphere – specifically, atmospheric pressure. When the barometric pressure of the air drops or is low, it signifies that the air has become moist, signaling a chance for rain. The body's nerve receptors respond to low air pressure. When air and environmental pressure fall, the amount of fluid or pressure in the body's joints changes as a result. People with arthritis will feel the change more significantly because they have less cartilage that cushions the body's joints. People with joint pain often know about the weather before it occurs. When the air pressure goes down immediately before a storm, their pain goes up.

Preserving joint mobility is an important step in keeping the pain of stiff joints at bay. Whether or not the joint is arthritic, maintaining joint mobility and movement is the best defense. Spend time each day performing stretches, exercises and body movements that are gentle but targeted specifically to the joint that troubles you. By maintaining motion in the joints, you can preserve flexibility and joint mobility which will decrease pain and increase your ability to stay active and pain free. So keep moving- rain or shine!

Dr. Guy Bahar is The Posture Doc., a Chiropractor with offices in Richmond Hill, Ontario, Toronto, Ontario and Oakville, Ontario.  Dr. Bahar specializes in correcting poor posture. His unique Posture Training Method corrects poor posture and improves forward head posture. See our amazing New Patient Special and find out what your posture number is today!