My Experiences of Living with Raynaud`s

Date: Thu 19th May 2016

I have had primary Raynaud`s since I was small and that was before my teenage years began. The symptoms I have always had are cold hands and feet. Being so young I never understood why I was so often cold. It was difficult to keep warm especially in the winter months. A hot water bottle and plenty of bedding as duvets were not available then. If the temperature was really extremely cold then a pair of socks had to be worn. When outside a duffle coat, boots, a scarf and a woollen hat and mittens were taken from the wardrobe. Vanity would often creep stealthily into my mind as I didn`t like my hair messy and being in a tangle.

it was getting the circulation going that sometimes bothered me. I would flap my hands and wriggle my fingers and even my toes until they were less numb

The comfort and warmth of my parents` home was welcoming. The central heating would be on and there would be a fine ambience throughout the home. I carried on doing what was possible. I could go for days and weeks without it bothering me. I knew I had to live with the condition and it was getting the circulation going that sometimes bothered me. I would flap my hands and wriggle my fingers and even my toes until they were less numb. The toes would sometimes contract and when they did I felt as if they would stay there permanently. I would also get a chill through my body and have that shivering feeling.

On one occasion I did take medication (nifedipine) but I had side effects. Then I decided to manage it myself. Despite having a sweet tooth I have always had a varied and healthy diet always trying to eat my fruit and vegetables and achieve getting the right balance of minerals and vitamins, protein and calcium. I have also since my teenager years done physical exercise. I always aim for twenty minutes a day to boost my circulation. I do believe that eating healthy foods and exercising does contribute.

In the early years I seemed to have been all right and it never bothered me but as the years have elapsed going into the freezer compartment I have had to put on gloves. If I need to get out a packet of vegetables I think to myself it`s only for a brief moment and it won`t harm me. Ice burn doesn`t take long to build up and I have to remember and get in to the routine of wearing gloves.

​Even when I am shopping I don`t like going down the aisles where there are a lot of refrigerators and freezers as I can feel the ice cold air permeating through my body.

Even when I am shopping I don`t like going down the aisles where there are a lot of refrigerators and freezers as I can feel the ice cold air permeating through my body. This even happens during the warm summer months. At first it`s welcoming but then after so long I can feel very cold and there is no wonder why I often have a cold head and feel stuffy. An attack can come on at any time. My hands would first turn white then purple and then red returning to their natural colour. Going from one extreme temperature to the other is not a pleasant feeling; it`s very painful. Fortunately the attacks have only been mild. Knowing the condition is not serious but debilitating I have accepted that I am going to have it for the rest of my life. The outcome is I have to be positive about the condition and the symptoms that come with it. I have ascertained taking ginger and honey is good for circulation as well as sinuses and hay fever.

Michael