Forecasting pain: the link between weather and pain

22 Dec 2016 Chris James   Health and wellbeing

We've all rolled our eyes when an elderly relative claims they can "feel it" in their bones when there's a change in the weather coming. However, it turns out that they might actually be right. New research shows that there could actually be an element of truth to this apparent old wives' tale.

Pain, pain, go away

In the first major study into the link between weather and the symptoms of pain, the preliminary results suggest that there is a link between the two. Cloudy With A Chance of Pain is the world's first smartphone-based survey that aims to find the link between symptoms of pain and the weather. It's a comprehensive study into the influence that the changing weather has on chronic pain, and it aims to improve medical research into pain management and treatment.

The study is still ongoing, and anyone from the UK who lives with chronic pain or arthritis is invited to take part - all you need is a smartphone. At present, more than 9,000 people are logging their symptoms on a daily basis using the simple app, which also monitors the weather conditions on an hourly basis to allow scientists to analyse the data.

Save it for a rainy day

If you've got some time to spare, it's worth looking at some of the preliminary results as it's proving to be quite interesting. Whilst looking specifically at a group of 100 participants over a period of four months in Leeds, Norwich and London, researchers found that as the number of sunny days increased, the amount of time that people spent in pain decreased. After a period of rain, the same group of people noted that their level of pain increased.

The study will run for 18-months in total, and researchers hope to put the data to good use by exploring everything from how air pressure, temperature and moisture levels can effect the symptoms of pain. Whilst discussing the research, leading researcher, Professor Will Dixon, noted that over 80% of his patients believed that there was a link between pain and the weather. In fact, some even claimed to be able to predict the weather based on their symptoms.

There's no denying that this research is fascinating and could revolutionise the way in which we treat pain on a day-to-day basis. We're quite excited to see the end results here at Online Pharmacy UK.

If you're struggling with chronic pain on a day-to-day basis, get in touch with our pharmacist to discuss your pain management options.

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