Chronic pain is at sounds – chronic. It’s always there. The problem, of course, that certain conditions, both internal and external, can make chronic pain worse. Keeping an eye on how your body – and specifically, your chronic pain – can help you determine how you prepare for warm weather with an eye toward keeping your chronic pain reduced as much as possible. Here is some information about chronic pain types that can become worse with the summer heat.
Joint pain and fatigue that comes from autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus can be worsened not just in heat, but in direct sunlight. UV light can, indeed, worsen the chronic pain you might already be feeling as a result of these conditions. It’s recommended to stay indoors when the sun is at its most bright and, when you do go out, stick with long pants and long sleeves, as well as 30 SPF sunscreen, with titanium oxide or zinc.
COPD and asthma, as well as lung cancer might exhibit more symptoms during the hot weather, usually due to wildfires which affect air quality. This will affect you more the closer you live to such fires, but ash and other particulate can be carried on the wind quite a distance. Staying indoors during the fire season may be the best bet.
Rosacea, which causes bumps and redness on the skin, can be exacerbated considerably by the sun, which may also dehydrate the skin, further worsening the problems. Even short walks in the sun can be a problem, or spending time in your garden. Making sure to avoid direct sunlight, and to dress appropriately should also help.
This nervous system disorder can get worse when overheated, so exposure to the sun can make it worse. There are situations where even a tiny body temperature increase can exacerbate symptoms of MS, so keeping cool is best. Wearing breathable clothing that is light weight should help, as should making sure you have an indoor option should your symptoms worsen as a result of exposure.
Migraines can make one incredibly sensitive to light and other stimuli, and make you feel physically ill. Staying hydrated can help you prevented a common migraine trigger – dehydration – as well as stave off other problems. Adding electrolytes to your drink will also help. If you do find yourself suffering a migraine during hot weather, be sure to find a quiet, dark space to recover. If you must go outside while suffering from a migraine, protect yourself with an umbrella, polarized sunglasses, or a hat.
Everyone deserves to enjoy the summer as much as possible, so if you’re going out, just be sure to remain prepared so that you can keep as much of your chronic pain at bay as you possibly can. Whether it’s clothing choices, food and drink choices, or lifestyle changes, give yourself the chance to enjoy summer with the least amount of chronic pain possible.