Can Your Pain Predict Rain?
Perhaps you have an older relative who tells you that it will rain tomorrow? Or perhaps you’re a migraine sufferer who gets them regularly when bad weather is coming? People have felt for many years that weather could be forecast by chronic, painful conditions. For many years, the medical profession has pooh-poohed this idea. There is now evidence that supports what people have been saying.
Japanese researchers took a simple approach. They collected daily sales figures of a popular headache medication from pharmacies and cross referenced it with weather reports. They found that there were spikes in sales around the time of drops in the barometric pressure, which happens right before a storm.
Why would barometric pressure influence pain? Our bodies are full of closed, gas-filled spaces, joints being one type of these. With normal barometric pressure, the pressure of the gas inside a joint is balanced with the outside atmospheric pressure. When the atmospheric pressure drops, the internal pressure becomes higher than the pressure outside. The capsule around the joint expands and stimulates nerves around the joint, which is interpreted by the brain as pain… as if you sprained the joint and it was swelling for that reason.
Other gas-filled spaces in the body include the sinuses and bursa (as in bursitis). Any of these can and often are affected by weather changes. Not everyone feels these changes, but if you do, you probably notice how regularly this happens.
We can’t change the weather, but by treating these areas of chronic pain, we can reduce the sensitivity of chronic pain areas. This controls how much pain is created by nothing more than a rainy day.
Chiropractic, Massage Therapy and Acupuncture can help.
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