How Weather Affects your Joints

When you were a child, you may have heard an adult say they knew bad weather was on the way by the pain in their body, specifically their joints. While this may have sounded silly at the time, they were often right, much to the amazement of your young mind. Here’s what your orthopedic doctor has to say about this phenomenon.

Weather Lesson

When the weather changes, a few things are happening in the air. When the weather is going to become stormy, the barometric pressure, or the gauge of atmosphericOrthopedic_Specialists force, begins to fall. On the flip side as the weather clears and improves, barometric pressure begins to rise again.

Pressure’s Effects on the Body

The theory your orthopedic doctor will share about joint pain and the weather relates to the effects of barometric pressure. When pressure levels are highest in fair weather, your joints receive the benefit of compression and support from the additional pressure. With a storm coming, the pressure drops, your tissues expand, and pain results in the joints. This problem can be especially painful in patients with advanced arthritis.

How to Prevent Weather Pain

Obviously, you can’t change the weather. Your orthopedic doctor can however help you make a plan for inclement weather. That plan may include increased dosages of pain or anti-inflammatory medications, or the use of support devices such as tight gloves or compression bandages on susceptible joints whenever bad weather looms. Though it may be difficult to get started, exercise will also improve joint comfort so try to bump up your activity during stormy conditions if possible.

For many orthopedic patients, the weather has a significant effect on their comfort. Talk to your orthopedic doctor today about strategies you can use to manage this common problem.


  1. Jonathan Pound says:

    I’ve always heard that the weather can influence joint pain. However, I never really heard a scientific explanation until I read your article. It make sense now that joint pain can be influenced by barometric pressure. I love your comment about trying to increase physical activity. I need to do more of that.

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