Get Into Spring With These Remedies for RA
It is time to celebrate. The days are getting longer. The weather is beginning to change for the better, and the birds are chirping right outside your window. Spring is here and not a moment too soon.
Winter only lasts for three months, but it has a way leaving its mark. The cold nights and the dark days manage to bring you down as the vibrant colors that accompany spring, summer and fall give way to grey and white leaving you with a less satisfying life. This dissatisfaction presents in two ways: the physical and the mental. Both are problematic and need to be remedied.
For you, you know the physical impact all too well. Your rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is typically worse in the cold of the winter. People with RA commonly associate changing weather with changing symptoms. Some people complain that humid days are the worst while others say that wet is better. Others report that changing barometric pressures are the biggest trigger for their RA symptoms. What most people can generally agree on, though, is that warmer weather is better for RA pain.
The mental impact of the winter may not be something that you have thought about before, but it is worth acknowledging. Remember, RA is a form of chronic pain. People with chronic pain tend to have more depressive symptoms overall. Compounding the issue, many people have a seasonal component to their depression. This means that in the winter, depressive symptoms are worse. You may have found yourself sleeping more, having less energy and feeling more pessimistic over the winter months. That’s the bad news.
8 Great Springtime Remedies
The good news is that winter is over. Spring brings with it opportunity, opportunity to improve your RA, shake off the winter blues and get back to a life worth living. Here’s more good news: The things you can do to improve your RA will improve your mood and vice versa. Follow these tips to get the most out of your spring:
- Exercise. By now, you have heard people speak at length about the benefits of exercise. Your doctors tell you that your pain may decrease with a regular program of walking or swimming. Your friends tell you about how their moods and energy improved after they started going to the gym. At this point, it is not about hearing the benefits; it is about finding a system that works for you. To start the process, think back on your exercise goals from last spring. What did you plan to do and what did you actually do? What were your successes and what were your barriers? If you can accurately analyze what did not work, you can be better prepared to find success this year. Some people come on too strong while others are never committed in the first place. If you tried doing it alone last year, get a group started. If you burned out from exercising daily, start slower and build up to a few days per week. Exercise has such a profound impact on your physical and mental well-being that it is worth trying again until you have achieved this goal.
Next page: ‘8 Great Springtime Remedies’ continued.