Extreme Weather and RA

Winter can feel long. Winter can be hard. When the barometric pressure has sudden changes of highs and lows and the temperature dips down well below freezing, it can wreak havoc on the body. It causes stress levels to go up and puts greater demands on the body both physically and mentally.

If you have or know some with RA, other types of arthritis or another auto-immune disease exacerbated by stress levels you may find this information helpful.   

These are some things that have helped me.

Gentle massage: Avoiding deep tissue massage when the body is already under stress is a good idea. Gentle massage will help in the healing process supporting your body's ability to restore and release anti-stress hormones. 

Deep Breathing: Consider a meditative deep breathing session. It will calm and relax the body which also encourages the anti-stress hormones. 

Gentle (warm) Yoga: Make sure and keep your body warm as you practice the gentle poses that Yoga provides. It's a calming, centering practice that can meet you where you are. 

Hot soak: Bath or Hot tub. Maybe try essential oils or something similar.  

Shavasana in the pool: (Pool temp needs to be warmer 87 degrees Fahrenheit.  You can use pool noodles to support neck, upper body and behind the knees so you can float and relax. 

Dance: Dancing is a great way to loosen things up, put a smile on your face and get your blood flowing to your joints. 

Tai Chi: Calming, centering mind/body movement

Hot Herbal Tea, Cold Tea of you live down south and your temperature just warmed up! 

Other ideas that come that come to mind are: Pilates, Gentle Water Class, Foam Rolling (this may irritate fibromyalgia), Range of motion exercises in a hot shower, take a nap, drink more water, eat anti-inflammatory foods.  

Sometimes the thought of movement can be daunting. Please know that any movement you can manage will benefit you. If you feel down, find a trusted friend or professional that you are comfortable talking to. 

There are other methods I'm sure I have not listed. I hope this is helpful to you or someone you know that might be struggling through the crazy weather patterns. 

Peace and Love

Shavasana in the pool

Shavasana in the pool

Denise Graef