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It’s the most wonderful time of the year. But if you experience chronic Nerve Pain, lower temperatures can make it one of the most difficult times of the year.

         Neuropathy — like most chronic pain — often gets worse as temperatures drop. Blood flow slows and can even decrease when your body is exposed to cold temperatures.  Nerve pain — especially in your hands and feet — increases as your circulation decreases.

         The change in the pressure outdoors— due to temperature drops — intensifies compression and/or irritation of the nerves, which send pain signals to your brain. In addition, your perception of pain increases as nerve signals slow down because of the pressure. Furthermore, your soft tissues become tight and stiff in the colder weather which can result in painful muscle spasms. This is why it’s important to take precautions as the seasons change.

         Here are a few tips to consider that can help your nerve pain in this Winter:

Bundle Up

         Make sure to wear the winter essentials. A coat, hat, scarf, gloves and thick socks are helpful when going outside. These items will prevent your body heat from leaving and the cold temperatures from getting to you. Keep your body heated and covered to help stimulate blood flow to help with the muscle stiffness. Since your feet and hands are affected first and most intensely, it’s important to layer your socks and keep your hands covered as much as possible.

Avoid Caffeine

         It’s nice to have a warm drink when it’s so cold, but try to stay away from caffeinated beverages. Consuming high amounts of caffeine can cause blood vessels to temporarily narrow, restricting the blood flow to your extremities. This could lead to increased nerve pain.

Take An Indoor Break.

         Everyone love building a snowman, making snow angels with your kids or even just taking a walk in the brisk air.  However, it is important to avoid being outside for extended periods of time.  It is important to take breaks indoors often as this will let the warmth return to your body which increases blood flow thus relaxing your tight muscles.

Incorporate Exercise

         Incorporating exercise such as light cardio can help warm up your muscles and promote good circulation thus warding off neuropathy pain caused by the colder temperatures.  Try gentle movement exercises such as yoga, walking, elliptical and light weight training.  Just do your best to keep moving whenever and wherever you can. 

If possible even a light swim in a heated pool could help to keep your body limber and ease away muscle tension.  If you or a loved one is living with nerve pain, we want you to know that it can be managed during the winter. Whether you’ve been living with it for years or you’re just newly dealing with these symptoms, life with Neuropathy chronic nerve pain can present daily challenges.  Call 732-END-PAIN now, and let Airport Plaza Spine & Wellness help you take your life back!!

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