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How Cold Weather Impacts Past Sports Injuries

man exercising in cold weather

As colder weather approaches over the next few months, you may already be anticipating (and dreading) that stubborn ache or pain from a pre-existing sports injury. The one that reverts to feeling like it did seconds after it happened, but only around this time of year when a cold front is bearing down on your area. The broken ankle suffered during a football game, or the torn ligament in your knee that never seemed to fully feel itself; sometimes they come back to haunt you.

When the soreness hits you know something’s coming. It’s like you’ve become your own meteorologist.

Why old injuries tend to flare up

This definitely isn’t a ground-breaking discovery. In fact, it was being noticed way back in ancient Greece. Around 400 BC, Hippocrates – the “father of western medicine” – noted that a significant amount of ailments directly correlated with the changing of the seasons.

Most will attribute the persistent discomfort to nothing more than a change in atmospheric pressure. Specifically, the drop in it that occurs as the weather deviates from the norm. For example, when a thunderstorm rolls through. Our bodies acclimate to local climates and their respective atmospheric pressures over time, so when things on the outside begin to change, our insides can sense it well before it actually happens.

All of those times your grandmother said, “It’s going to be cold next week. I can feel it in my bones.” Well, was she ever wrong? There’s a reason for this.

Bones, muscles, tendons, even scar tissue – all have a different density, and therefore contract and expand in various ways during cold weather. Same goes for the fluid around joints, resulting in occasional stiffness, especially at the site of an old injury. These contractions and expansions set off the specific nerve cells responsible for pain.

Treatment for weather-related pain

Although many suffer through years of this vicious cycle, you may be able to do something about it. If stretching, icing, or any other relief methods are no longer viable options, and the pain of your past sports injury is becoming increasingly too much to bear each and every winter, come see us at Harper Wellness & Rehab Center.

As a board certified chiropractic sports practitioner, Dr. Dana Harper is ready to help you tackle those old injuries and liberate you from weather-related pain. Call (713) 622-3456 to schedule an appointment today!

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4544 Post Oak Place Drive Suite 287
Houston, TX 77027