A woman plunging in a cold pool as it is snowing outside

Taking A Cold Dip For My Psoriatic Arthritis

Cold therapy, which varies from ice baths to cold plunging, has gained significant popularity. From sportsmen to your everyday Joe and Jane, many people are reaching for this alternative therapy. It often has something for everyone if you are willing to give it a go.

How cold plunges help my psoriatic arthritis

Everyone reaches for therapy or treatment for different reasons. What got me into this? My friends and family. They tried it first, and I got to witness their benefits directly. These are the ones that got me excited to give it a try.

  • Reducing inflammation. I am willing to try about anything to manage my inflammation.
  • Mood Boosting. While the skeptic in me was reluctant to believe this one, it sure did work. It's a practice.
  • Pain Reduction. Having psoriatic arthritis means I have ridiculous pain levels most of the time.
  • Anxiety Reducing. I've used ice cubes to calm my anxious mind. Maybe this could work too?

Cold therapy considerations

As with everything new, always run this by your doc first. Especially if you are going to expose yourself to extreme cold, my doctor was kind enough to take a call to discuss all of this with me. I did not actually have to go in to see him. 

Cold water can affect your body in different ways, including blood pressure and heart rate. So this step should not be skipped. Here are a few other things to keep in mind.

Build your tolerance!

I started small with cold showers. I gradually allowed the water to change from warm to cool and eventually to cold. Importantly I only did it for 10 seconds at a time. I wanted to build up resistance, or tolerance, if you will before I moved on to actual plunges. 

Once I had managed to get used to that, I started increasing my time under the water, eventually going up to 60 seconds.

Time of day can make all the difference

Moving forward, I will do my dips in the morning to get colder water and, therefore, more benefits. I can tell you for sure that it becomes something you may want to do as well.

I have moved on to cold plunging into my pool. While for the hardcore plungers, this might seem small. It has had massive benefits for me; my mood has increased substantially on the regular. My pain levels have certainly come down. On very bad days, I will go into the water more than once, which has a greatly positive impact.

Consider taking the plunge!

I never thought this was something I would say out loud, yet here I am. The cold plunge in the water makes me excited to get back in daily. I find that submerging is much better than a cold shower. When you first get in, that crisp bite almost takes your breath away. I enjoy it so much.

My pain levels from my psoriatic arthritis are definitely down. I find if I skip it for a few days, my pain levels quickly spike again. I plan to continue on!

This or That

Do you know what type(s) of psoriatic arthritis you have?

By providing your email address, you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Psoriatic-Arthritis.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Join the conversation

Please read our rules before commenting.