Managing long term pain during winter

Story by Somshun Nessa

Having run a community pain support group in Burngreave and Page hall for the past four years, I have listened to many participants complain of increased joint/ muscle pain during winter.

Here are some tips from the group to help manage pain through the colder months.

1. Don’t avoid exercise. Gentle exercises such as stretching, chair-based exercise, walking, and swimming can help reduce pain, strengthen muscles, and warm you up by improving circulation.

2. Layer up and keep warm. Apply heat pads, hot water bottles, or warm beanbags on area of pain for a short time to help relieve aching joints and muscle.

3. Remember to drink water especially before and after any exercise, dehydration can cause reduced flexibility which could increase the chances of trips and falls.

4. Eat healthy and avoid comfort eating.

5. Find ways to relax – try and treat yourself to a massage every so often.

6. Stay sociable.