|PRESSURE CHANGES AND HEALTH
METEOROLOGIST JEFF HABY
Air pressure is a function of the altitude and the weather. Driving into changing altitudes or
flying will result in having to deal with pressure changes. The movement of high and low pressure
systems will change the air pressure even if you stay at home. The body adjusts to the outside
air pressure by having an
equal air pressure inside the body. When the outside air pressure changes then the body will
adjust to this new air pressure. Sometimes there will be health influences when the body
attempts to adjust to the new air pressure. This essay will explain these health influences.
Pressure changes can easily be sensed in the ears. The ears will fill stuffy, will release air
pressure and can make you feel uneasy. There are ways to deal with this problem. This problem
is very common when flying since the air pressure in the plane will vary and it is lower than
the sea level air pressure. One way to deal with the filling of the ears is to chew gum. The jaw
motion allows the pressure to be equalized easier. Another method is to yawn. Yawning can
allow the excess pressure to be released.
Pressure changes can sometimes be felt in the joints or in old injuries. This is because there
is an amount of air in these places. This air can have trouble adjusting to the outside
air pressure when the outside air pressure changes rapidly. The problem is potentially
worse when the air pressure lowers outside because this
causes a higher pressure in the joints which can lead to inflammation and pain. This is a method for how
some people are able to predict stormy weather coming. When a low pressure system approaches or
when a storm approaches the air pressure will lower and this can be felt as aches in the body.
When a high pressure system and nice weather approaches this will reduce the swelling in the
joints and can make a person feel better.
In conclusion, the body has some interesting reactions to pressure changes and they can
make a person feel uneasy. Fortunately most of these problems are minor and temporary.