Raynaud's is a common condition in which the blood vessels in the body’s extremities overreact to stress or cold. And as the days get colder, many Raynaud's sufferers wonder how to manage their condition. Today Dr. Joel Segalman, Dr. Stephen Lazaroff, and Dr. Brittany Ciaramello at Performance Foot & Ankle Specialists, LLC in New Haven County and Fairfield County share information that can help.
Some people have a more difficult time with the cold weather than others. If your hands change color while in cold temperatures and experience pain, numbness, or tingling, you could have Raynaud's syndrome.
In the first stage of a Raynaud’s episode, the skin turns yellow or white in response to the restricted blood supply. After some time, the blood vessels will reopen, and the fingers turn a purplish-blue color. After a minute or two, normal blood can fill the fingers again, and the color returns to normal.
Not all people with Raynaud's go through this range of color changes, and attacks can vary significantly in severity. But the symptoms are uncomfortable, and they can make you dislike cold weather even more.
Stress often worsens Raynaud's, so do your best to keep your stress to a minimum. Think about taking up yoga or other exercises that will help you relax and help regulate your circulation. Additional risk factors for Raynaud's include exercises that require gripping (such as cycling), using vibrating tools, and smoking.
To manage Raynaud's symptoms, wear thick gloves and many thin layers of clothing in colder weather. You can also consider taking up stress relief practices such as mindfulness, proven to help manage the stressful conditions that can worsen the symptoms. If you're currently a smoker, pursue help in quitting.
For most, managing Raynaud's is just a matter of heating your home, wearing thick socks, and doing what you can to stay warm and cozy. The winter months may not be your favorite season, but staying mindful of your triggers can be enough to keep symptoms in check.
If you suffer from Raynaud’s and need help in managing your symptoms, contact the office of Dr. Joel Segalman, Dr. Stephen Lazaroff, and Dr. Brittany Ciaramello at Performance Foot & Ankle Specialists, LLC in New Haven County and Fairfield County to schedule an appointment. You can reach our Waterbury office at (203) 755-0489 or our Newtown office at (203) 270-6724.