Could this be causing your joint pain?
One in four U.S. adults struggle with joint pain caused by arthritis, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For years, many people suffering from arthritis blame worsening joint pain on certain weather conditions.
A recent study was conducted to decipher which weather conditions triggered arthritis pain the most. Temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure and wind speed were tested among over 10,000 participants from four different locations.
Researchers discovered that humidity was the most triggering weather condition for arthritis pain. A combination of cold, windy and damp weather conditions increased the chances of arthritis pain by 20%. Temperature was the least triggering for participants in the study.
“The study validates what we see in our practice anecdotally,” says Dr. Joseph Novotny, an orthopedic surgeon at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center in Normal, Ill. “Patients often come into the office with increased complaints of joint aches and pains during periods of cold, damp weather. “
Participants rated their pain level each day as well as answered questions about mood and physical activity level on a smartphone app. The data was aligned with that of the weather.
Researchers did not pinpoint why certain weather conditions caused flare-ups in joint pain. However, they think their findings will be significant in creating a “pain forecast” for patients days in advance.