Monsoon weather changes to blame for more pain complaints, doctors say

Posted at 7:15 PM, Jun 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-26 08:01:52-04

If you are feeling under the weather, just blame the weather.

A Valley doctor said that she sees an uptick in patients desperate for pain relief during the months of monsoon. From joint pain, to arthritis to migraines, many people are feeling it.

"In my head...what happens is it starts in one place; it works all the way around," explained Rebekah Moore.

Moore works at EVDI Medical Imaging in Mesa, but she has also suffered from migraines for more than 10 years.

"I've been here during monsoon and it is...harder," Moore said. "Because it's almost every day."

Whatever the Arizona day brings us, it is piling on the pain for many.

"People think it's a wives tale," Dr. Penny Bowen joked. "When you've got a grandfather who says - 'I've got a tricked knee. I can tell when a storm's coming!' It's a real thing."

Dr. Bowen said, she also experiences pain, suffering from arthritis that is magnified during the summer.

"In each of your joints, you have little baroreceptors or pressure receptors that are very sensitive to changes in barometric pressure," Dr. Bowen explained.

So, when the weather shifts so suddenly, like it is known to do during monsoon, those receptors are activated and you become more sensitive.

"It causes a shift in fluid within the joints and that's what leads to the swelling, the stiffness, the pain, the increased symptoms," Dr. Bowen said.

She recommends seeing a physician if you feel your pain is getting stronger, but Dr. Bowen also said there are proactive measures you can take.

"Taking care of yourself, staying hydrated, exercising regularly and doing your best to reduce stress in your life," Dr. Bowen said. "Because those are known triggers that you as a patient can help take care of."