BURR! That’s the sound I’m preparing to hear ringing through my ears in the next couple months as the winter hits. It always feels like winter is around the corner when it’s not even that season!
Oh wait, maybe it has to do with me living in Vancouver, WA, the city that’s quickly growing in population warmly, but not one saying its goodbyes to the cold.
But why does the cold weather get its reputation as the silent lower back killer? If you haven’t taken a light stroll around town with your car windows down, or on a walk outside, do me a favor please…stay indoors!
The reason I say that is because there is a lasting effect on your muscles, ligaments, joints, and the all too common spine. What’s behind it? Other than the cold, it has more to do with how 1.Well your bodies structures are warmed up and 2. how severe your pain is.
Up to this point in the Remove Back Pain journey(If you’ve been following us), we’ve talked about everything left, right, and from top to bottom – the ways to get rid of your type of back pain, eating the right anti-inflammatory foods, consuming the right natural medicines, and cognitive thinking.
Isn’t it time you know how to get rid of lower back pain in the cold weather? I do.
But There’s no manual there that teaches you how to treat your back pain in the different seasons of the year.
Lights turn to shadows, heat turns to cold, so it’s all too important we take the right steps if you’ve been met with these conditions.
In this article, you’re going to get a whole tail spine of truth, and measures to take when you find yourself around cold temperatures, from:
- Home temperature
- Outdoor temperature
- Dark and Gloomy days
- Short and cold days
Can you tell me where else will you find such information that teaches you precisely what steps you can do with the temperature changes?
I haven’t seen the WebMD’s, or Spine-Healths of the world come close, and that’s not to discredit them or who they are, but when it comes to first hand experience, who would trust first?
So Let’s get started if you’re ready!
Your Thermometer or Fan, The Cold Truth
My goodness, it’s 92 degrees up in here! Have you had one of the days in the summer or when for some reason you find that you’re thermostat has been pumped up another extreme record?
I sure have(trying to stay calm about that one time). There’s nothing wrong with a little heat, but too much of it can make you sweat like a hazardous time ticking bomb disarmer.
When you erupt, it can trigger a response in your cerebral cortex, this triggering your lower back pain to go into a haze. In other words, you are quicker to move freely then if it were a colder stat.
Why is this a problem? With one single movement, the likelihood of injuring yourself is greater, because you’re not thinking about it much.
If I walked into a room that felt like it was extremely warm, I would immediately reach for the shower knob, or a col pack of ice. Neither one is a reliable option, and it could lead to more complications( I’ll have an article on that soon).
Why was it important that I added a prelude like this to cold temperature? Because it draws the picture, that you’re not invincible, and in a way to show you that you need to take it more seriously.
At your home, it’s the place where you get to be yourself, where it should be the most safest place on earth. You should feel indestructible, and at rest, but instead you’re treading the deeper waters of a larger ordeal…Your lower back pain.
But you can adjust, and like myself, this has worked for me:
- Check your thermostat(if you have one). I like to place mine just under 65 degrees, around the 62-64 degrees I find works the best. Give it sometime to melt down, and in this time, prepare to do activities that make you be more mobile. The reason I say this is because the last thing you want is for your back to stiffen up, and from relaxing too much
- If you have no thermostat, and you do have a air conditioning unit, it’s crucial you set the right boundaries. Sometimes when we sit or we’re in a room, it gets really cold, and I mean freezing temperatures; which feel good, but remember that big fella behind you(your lower back spine).D
Don’t do the following:
- Stand to close to the unit, and keep your back away from it as much as possible. The point is too avoid your back muscles from tensing up, and causing your joints to stiffen up.
- Place an ice cold bag of ice on your lower back. This will cause your pain to worsen, and it will cause you’re muscles to tense and stiffened up.
Here’s a video I posted to my Facebook support group that tells you even more about how to prepare for the cold:
What you heard in that video will be explained in further detail as you read on.
The Outdoor Breeze, An Abundance Of Chills
Now that we’ve talked about indoor cold and heat, in the words of every bartender, “let’s take it outside”. What does it feel like when you sit outside or spend nearly half your day out in the magnificent(sarcasm) cold? Trust me, you wouldn’t want to know. Being outside with a lower back pain is like a fish being out on land, they don’t always mix. Why?
Temperatures can drop in just about every city, state, or country, and no matter which part of the country you find yourself in, there’s a great chance you will experience lower back pain as the outdoor conditions change. If you live in a city where you have to shovel up snow and tread through heavy ice filled sidewalks, or a place far from drought, you will most certainly be at risk for a higher muscle strain, sprains, joint aches, and so much more!
You want to make sure you lace up the right shoes, the right clothing, but even then, that doesn’t prevent the cold or rain from dropping in.
Closely tied to the reason you experience more pain, and pain that starts out is because of barometric pressure in the earths atmosphere. How nuts is that?
Let me draw out an example so you can truly believe I’m not crazy. In this wonderful rainy, and plunging cold winter days in Washington State, you never know what you’ll get. Some instances, you’ll see the sun shine bright, and not even a moment later, it gets all cold and rainy, and what the….where did the snow come from?
Seriously! One long day during the winter season here, I was outside going for a walk around my neighborhood – Yes, it was a clear day. About 56 degrees, no rain, surprisingly. So I had made it around 2 out of 6 blocks. Then suddenly, hail. And when the hail comes here, it pours, the temperature drops, and it starts to rain. This day was no different, and it did. Almost immediately, I reached for my lower back as if I started to feel it stiffen up. Not knowing it back at the time, It was not a good idea just to stand there.
Standing for almost a minute was enough for my back to stiffen up. And I had to be careful about rotating and bending forward and backward. This would cause my pain to worsen, especially in clothing that was drenched.
One thing is that when you get cold, your:
…All tighten up and become less flexible, therefore making you either more prone to an injury, or to cause more pain to your already existing back pain.
Dark and Gloomy Days, Are They Encouraging Or Discouraging?
Do you get a tingling feeling that’s not all just physically, but in your head?
Well, the first line of attack, and defense usually starts in your mind where your brain receptors , and emotional responses hang out. What’s a Brain receptor?
It’s kind of like a bunch of like a bunch of teeny tiny bots that send you a fight or flight response when you feel any type of physical, or in this case, a cold wind breeze.
Think about the factors that are at play:
- Cold Weather
Wrap that all up into a bundle and you have a recipe for a “brain malfunction”. What I mean by this is that, you have already lost half the battle. And now what?
You add Dark gloomy days, no way! But there’s a way around it if you can carefully muster up your spirit and strength to do so.
First the rain and breeze shows up – and at times unpronounceable, and now we stick it where the sun will not shine? That’s right, when you get a glance at a dark and gloomy day, this can worsen your lower back pain, but not physically at first.
We’re talking about depression.In this mental state, it can trigger a chronic lower back pain response, or aggravate your chronic lower back pain. These are some of the contributing factors:
- colder temperatures
- holiday relates stresses
- few hours of sunlight
…Will all take a tole on your overall emotional well being. Some people actually experience what is known as seasonal effective disorder(SED) which is a depression state that occurs during the season changes, and this doesn’t go to well with your lower back pain.
When It gets dark, cold, or even gloomy outside, I want you to practice an exercise.
Think about a happy time in your life when you were once really strong. Hold it there, keep it, now snap out of it. You’ll 9 times out of 10 usually feel better at first right?
The key is to remember a happier time, and then after you snap out of it, then begins stage 2.
STAGE 2: Stay in a bright room/place. Nothing will help if you are surrounded by a dark place in your home, or elsewhere. Make sure that you have the lights on in your place, or that you have a form of a distraction like calming music.
Everytime I put on music, my mood shifted from literally being sunk to the floor to bringing my mood back up.
STAGE 3: This part is optional, but I find that it really is useful. Have positive people around you, or at the very least, someone who can take your distraction away from the cold gloomy night sky.
Shorter and colder days, It’s in the Exercise:
We’ve come down to one of the most important aspects of your health, and improving your lower back pain, and that’s by exercising.
If you’re someone like me who like enjoying their exercise activities outdoor, it can be tough to maintain your workouts on a cold winter day.
As much as you want to take the bike ride in the morning so you don’t have to at night is not a benefit. Either in the morning or late at night, you can do some serious damage. So how do you get around it?
Resort to indoor activities, such as:
- an indoor heating pool
- stationary bicycle
- walking indoors(use stairs if you have them)
You’d be surprised how awesome it not only feels for your back, but how much more energy you’ll have, and less pain.
Duck, Dive, and Dodge…The Cold Winter Days
What’s worse then a bad back? A bad back when its chilling”. There are many benefits to getting outdoor and cracking up a few good workouts, or if you’re out an about on your scavengers, but its important that you take extreme caution.
Prepare ahead of time, and make sure you have a schedule before hand. This way you’ll know the amount of time you’ll be spending on your occasion, and for how long you can endure it. But at all cost, don’t get comfy with the winter days. Get out with the right clothing, and in this case the more layers, the better.
It’s often that our bodies adjust to the climate, and more so your symptoms are being aggravated, and it’s no the actual weathers fault. By consistently exercising, eating right, and doing your best to stay active is the key.
You’ve learned that at any time in the day, whether its light or dark outside, it can reak havoc on your spine, and whole lower back. It’s in your best interest to do indoor workouts, because at the end of the day your goal is to help your spine.
Are you going to be traveling in cold weather soon, or are you heading to your next school session? If so, make sure you check out what you need to do on a cold day when the bell rings here.
If you have any questions, or concerns, please do get a hold of me. You can leave me a comment down below, and I’ll make sure to get back to you in the next 24 hours.