Raynaud's Phenomenon: The Mystery of the White Finger
|Hockey games can definitely induce Raynaud's...|
I started paying a little bit more attention to my Raynaud's since being diagnosed, but it took me until just a couple of years ago to make another connection. Raynaud's is oftentimes a secondary condition and is frequently linked with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Hmm. As I stated, I've had symptoms of Raynaud's for as long as I can remember. I didn't start having RA symptoms until I was 19. But it makes me wonder: was RA lying dormant for some years, and was Raynaud's actually my first symptom or indicator of rheumatoid disease? I'm not really sure how to differentiate primary from secondary Raynaud's, but it is thought-provoking.
The other interesting thing is that I believe my Raynaud's symptoms to be getting worse. The symptoms occur more frequently and with a greater severity than they have in the past. Sometimes it actually hurts when my fingers regain their feeling and the blood flow returns. I've also been noticing other symptoms that I can only assume are linked with Raynaud's. Sometimes instead of a whole finger or section of a finger turning white, my finger and even whole hand will turn blotchy -- and become super itchy! This happened to me the other day while grocery shopping. By the way, I can almost never complete a trip to the grocery store without bringing on a Raynaud's attack. Between the cool produce, the refrigerated dairy section, and the oft cool store temperatures...it's practically hopeless.
|Two fingers with white tips -- you |
can see a bit of purple on the tip
of the index finger. My fingers
tend to turn bright red as
the color returns.
For now, I've just been coming up with ways to help keep warm. I usually have socks on, and my feet are usually okay unless I'm out in cold(ish) weather. My fingers, exposed to the air, often get cold indoors. I've invested in a few things to help:
1. A heated mouse. Yes, they make heated mice. I found two different companies that make them, but ended up getting the WarmMe mouse for my desk at work. It uses infrared heat and actually does help keep my hand warm -- which is great, because for whatever reason my mousing hand is always FREEZING at work. My co-worker told me that it must be wind burn ;) While the WarmMe mouse works great as a hand warmer, it rather sucks as a mouse. So, for now, I have two mice on my desk -- one for most of my actual mousing tasks and one to rest my hand on when it's cold!
2. Gloves! Even fingerless gloves will help keep my hands warm. A friend of mine made me a pair tailored to just my size, and they are great for helping to stay warm when you still need to be able to use your fingers. Like for typing.
3. Hand warmers. I have always liked hand warmers and toe warmers and always insisted on using them while skiing. I always wondered why other people didn't need toe warmers to keep their toes from feeling like they're going to fall off while on the slopes -- but I think I have my answer now. Tom found me a unique Christmas gift last year. It's a reusable hand warmer that you actually ignite. We had such a mild winter this past year, I didn't really use it. We'll have to break it out more this year.
Hi there! My name is Dana and I live in West Michigan with my husband, Tom and our dog Happy Gilmore. I created this space as a place to share the things I learn along this journey I call life. I work in marketing and I'm a sort of Jane of All Trades, interested in all things nature, gardening, cooking, exploring and learning new things. This blog is a conglomeration of my interests, hobbies, life and life lessons. Thanks for stopping by!