Winter is approaching, and with it, cold extremities. Most of us suffer from cold feet in the winter, and some of us hate winter because of it! However, you may stop blaming the winter and begin blaming Raynaud’s disease, since it may cause freezing feet!
Let’s find out more about this disease…
What is Raynaud’s disease?
Normally, our bodies respond to cold weather by constricting blood vessels to keep the body warm. Similarly, in response to high temperatures, it dilates the blood vessels, enabling blood to flow more easily to the skin and ridding it of heat.
Raynaud’s disease affects the blood circulation to certain regions of the body and appears as an excessive reaction to cold conditions, so the blood capillaries constrict more than usual to keep the body and internal organs warm, which results in reducing blood flow to extremities leading to turning cold feet blue and finally white.
Raynaud’s symptoms might persist from a few minutes to many hours.
- Change in skin color
- Tingling feeling
- Difficulty moving the affected area
You can usually treat Raynaud’s disease by following a few tips, although sometimes medication may be necessary.
Tips for patients
- Keeping the house warm
- Wearing warm clothes in cold weather
- Wear gloves and warm socks
- Exercising regularly to improve blood circulation
- Practicing yoga to help you relax
- Eat a healthy and balanced diet
- stop smoking
- Reduce drinks that contain a lot of caffeine, such as tea, coffee and cola
In case that you experience an attack and the symptoms arise, go to a warm room and move around and move your fingers and toes to increase blood flow. It can also help to put your hands under warm water, but pay attention to water temperature because numbness can make it difficult to assess water temperature.
Most often, your doctor will prescribe calcium channel blockers because they dilate blood vessels to increase blood flow and relieve symptoms. Depending on the pattern of symptoms and how well you respond to treatment, you may be asked to take the medication every day, or you may only need to take it during a sudden cold snap.
When do you consult a doctor?
- If your symptoms are getting worse
- Symptoms affecting your daily activities
- Symptoms appear on only one side of the body
- You suffer from joint pain, rash, or muscle weakness
- Your symptoms first appeared after the age of thirty
- If your child is younger than 12 and has symptoms of Raynaud’s disease