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Common Winter Orthopedic Issues

As the weather gets colder in Michigan and we spend more time indoors, it's not uncommon for orthopedic issues to crop up. Here are some of the most common winter orthopedic issues we see at Associated Orthopedics of Detroit, along with some tips on how to prevent them.


Joint pain: As the temperature outside drops, so does the level of humidity in the air. This can cause the joints to become stiff and painful. To prevent joint pain, make sure to stay hydrated and dress warmly when you go outside. If you do start to feel joint pain, over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen can help.


Muscle strains: shoveling snow, carrying heavy bags of groceries, and even just hunching over your computer can lead to muscle strains. To prevent muscle strains, take breaks often and stretch before and after physical activity. If you do strain a muscle, rest it as much as possible and apply ice to reduce swelling.


Slips and falls: icy sidewalks and driveways are a recipe for disaster. To prevent slips and falls, make sure to wear proper footwear with good traction. You should also salt your walkways and steps before each winter storm hits. And if you do happen to fall, make sure to see a doctor right away, especially if you hit your head or have any numbness or tingling in your extremities.


Arthritis Pain: Arthritis is a common problem for many Americans, and the cold weather can make it worse. If you suffer from arthritis, you know that the pain can be debilitating. The best way to combat arthritis pain is to stay active. Exercise helps to increase blood flow and reduce inflammation. However, if the pain is too much to bear, there are a variety of over-the-counter and prescription medications that can help. Be sure to talk to your doctor before taking any new medications.


Frozen Shoulder: Frozen shoulder, or adhesive capsulitis, is a condition in which the shoulder capsule becomes inflamed and stiff. This can make it difficult to move your arm. Frozen shoulder is most common in people aged 40-60, women more so than men. The exact cause is unknown, but it is believed to be related to an injury or overuse of the shoulder joint. Treatment typically involves physical therapy and stretching exercises. In some cases, cortisone injections or surgery may be necessary.


Osteoarthritis: Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease that affects the joints. It occurs when the cartilage that cushions the joints breaks down over time. Osteoarthritis can affect any joint in the body, but it is most common in the knees, hips, hands, and spine. Symptoms include pain and stiffness in the joints. Treatment typically involves a combination of exercise, weight loss (if needed), and over-the-counter or prescription medication. Surgery may be an option for severe cases that do not respond to conservative treatment methods.


Winter can be a tough time on our bodies, but by taking precautions we can prevent many common orthopedic issues. Stay warm, stay hydrated, and take breaks often to keep your body healthy all season long! The Associated Orthopedists of Detroit PC in St. Clair Shores and Shelby Township, MI is committed to providing the best care possible for our patients following a car accident. Our team provides immediate and expert treatment to trauma patients. If you've suffered a serious injury and need medical attention, call the office or use the online scheduling tool to make your appointment.


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