Each year, when you get that first cold blast of the fall, the tire pressure warning light goes on in your car. That’s because the change in weather brings a change in atmospheric pressure. This causes the air inside your tire to contract. You have to add air to minimize wear and tear on your car and keep it running smoothly.
Changes in weather and season can also have a direct impact on how you feel and function – physically, mentally and emotionally. Let’s take a look at how the change to a colder, darker environment can affect your health.
Have you ever known someone who blames their pain on the cold weather or says a flareup is a sign that a storm is coming? It might seem silly, but there can be a direct connection between pain and weather.
Changes in atmospheric pressure, or how much the air weighs, can contribute to headaches, sinus congestion, muscle aches and soreness, joint pain and stiffness, lack of sleep, and poor concentration. For example, low air pressure can create an increase in joint fluid, which can irritate nerves and cause joint pain.
Lymph flow, which supports your immune system and protects you from viruses and bacteria, also tends to slow down at this time of year due to changes in atmospheric pressure. When your immune system isn’t as active or responsive as it should be, you tend to get sick more often.
When it’s 65 degrees, you can just start your car and go. When it’s 35 degrees, you might want to give it a few minutes to warm up. Modern technology makes today’s cars more resilient to cold temperatures, but the human body hasn’t had any technological upgrades.
When the temperature drops, it takes muscles and joints longer to loosen up, which is why tightness, stiffness and soreness become more common at this time of year. As a result, people tend to be less active when it gets cold. Less activity means less blood flow, and poor circulation can lead to inflammation.
The human body absorbs vitamin D from sunlight. After the clocks fall back, it’s probably dark when you get out of work. Without that daily dose of vitamin D, you can feel sluggish during the day and have trouble sleeping at night. This can also lead to seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which may include depression, low energy, and
difficulty sleeping and concentrating. SAD symptoms typically start out mild but can become more severe.
How Chiropractic Care Can Help
Chiropractic manipulation, or an adjustment, positions your spine in a way that reduces interference between your nervous system and the rest of your body. This allows the brain to make sure the various systems of your body (immune, digestive, circulatory, respiratory, etc.) have what they need to function properly. Techniques such as ultrasound, electrical muscle stimulation and deep tissue massage can also be used to promote blood and lymph flow, reduce tension and relieve soreness.
If you haven’t been feeling quite right since the weather turned cold, regular chiropractic visits can help you restore and maintain your good health. Remember, keep your spine in line and you’ll be fine! Schedule an appointment so we can get to the root cause of what’s bothering you and create a plan to stimulate your body’s natural ability to heal itself.