Thursday, March 10, 2011

Cold Hands

As a teenager my mother got worried about my cold, white fingers and a doctor diagnosed me with Raynaud's Phenomenon (fortunately my hands never look as bad as the ones shown in the article!), so it's not uncommon for my hands and feet to be really cold, and sometimes really pale coloured.

In India it was rarely bad, since it's tropical and hot most of the time.  And so far here in New York City, even though the winter, it never got bad, either.  Once in a while in the office, and I usually warmed up one hand at a time wrapping them around a hot cup of tea (fortunately I can use the computer mouse with either hand).  After warming up one hand, when I grab it with the other, the part I was holding onto is often cooler than the rest of the cup.

But I really notice it on the subway, holding onto the metal poles.  They're usually chilly.

But if someone else has recently held one it's hot there.  Sometimes I'll grab onto the pole and then someone else gets off at a station.  It could be several stops later, but I change my grip and hold on where they held on, and the metal still feels hot.  Then if I move my hand to where I'd been holding on for a few stops it'll barely be warmer than the parts no one touched.

When outside most of the winter I walked and walked and kept moving, so that kept my blood flowing without much trouble with circulation.  My fingers got cold when taking photographs, but not the same as the Raynaud's symptoms...

Reading through that Wikipedia article, there's an interesting fact, "Sufferers are more like to have migraine ... than controls."  No doubt...  I certainly have the migraines...

Now that I think about it, maybe that's how I developed my love of long, hot showers...

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