Understanding How Autumn Weather Affects Chronic Pain

Understanding How Autumn Weather Affects Chronic Pain

Autumn has arrived! When leaves begin to change and there’s a distinct crisp coolness in the air, there’s no mistaking it: autumn is in full force. While many look forward to cozy sweaters, pumpkin lattes and vibrant foliage, for others this season brings more than aesthetic pleasures: an increase in chronic pain can sometimes occur or feel worse in the fall season. Our Texas pain doctors at the Comprehensive Pain Institute of Bedford & Benbrook can shed light on why. Together let’s explore “The Autumn Effect” and its correlation with chronic pain!


Pressure and Aches in Barometric Pressure Relief Systems

One of the primary factors responsible for increased pain during fall is shifting barometric pressure. As seasons transition and atmospheric pressure drops, many believe this causes expansion of tissues and fluids around joints.  This in turn causes greater discomfort for those suffering from arthritis or other joint-related conditions resulting in an increase in pain and/or stiffness.


Cooler Temperatures

Fall’s fluctuating temperatures can have direct repercussions for our muscles and joints, especially for those already predisposed to muscle and joint conditions. Muscle contractions due to cold weather can reduce circulation to these areas, potentially leading to stiffness. As our comprehensive pain management center’s experts suggest, staying warm during these cooler months by layering up can help counter this effect.


Reduced sunlight

Reduced sunlight may also alter our circadian rhythm and affect production of essential hormones and neurotransmitters—one such neurotransmitter, serotonin, has an important role in pain modulation and reduced sunlight means reduced serotonin production – potentially heightening perception of pain.

Additionally, limited sunlight has an adverse impact on vitamin D synthesis. Research suggests that lower vitamin D levels have been linked with chronic pain; thus it’s critical that we consume adequate Vitamin D during the colder months.


Seasonal Changes Can Affect Mood Disorders

The shift between seasons can have a tremendous effect on mood disorders like Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Depression often intensifies pain perception; therefore recognizing and responding to mood shifts during fall are essential in managing chronic pain effectively.


Navigating Chronic Pain at Comprehensive Pain Institute of Bedford & Benbrook, TX in Autumn

If the changing seasons have you experiencing increased pain levels, our TX pain doctors can help. At our comprehensive pain management centers in the Dallas-Ft Worth area (Bedford & Benbrook), we take an integrative approach and ensure all our patients receive personalized and holistic treatment plans:

  • Remain Active: While cooler weather may prevent outdoor activities, staying active remains essential to alleviating pain symptoms. From indoor exercises and gym memberships to making sure you move every hour or simply making time to move about each hour—remaining active can help relieve some symptoms.
  • Heat: Utilizing heating pads, warm baths or simply making sure you are adequately layered can provide some much-needed relief from cold-induced discomfort.
  • Supplements: To counteract reduced sunlight exposure, consult with a healthcare professional before taking vitamin D supplements.
  • Consultation: When your pain becomes unbearable, consulting pain management specialists like our team at the Comprehensive Pain Institute of Bedford & Benbrook can be invaluable. Get in touch with our team to setup a consultation.

While the Autumn Effect may be real and daunting, understanding its mechanisms and proactively mitigating its impacts can make transition easier when dealing with chronic pain. Remember, fall doesn’t need to be marred by chronic pain—with the right knowledge and tools at your fingertips, you can enjoy this season to its fullest. Our team at Comprehensive Pain Institute are always here for support should any doubt arise – don’t let pain ruin autumn; take control now and feel better!

© 2024 Comprehensive Pain Institute
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