Raynaud’s Disease: What is it?

A spasm of arterioles, most frequently in the fingers, but occasionally in other peripheral areas like the nose or tongue, is referred to as Raynaud’s illness. Intermittent pallor and cyanosis are symptoms. Idiopathic, young women are affected by the condition in 60 to 90% of reported instances. Subcooling the affected area or experiencing some mental stress might lower the threshold of tolerance, which is the point at which a spasm will start to happen.

Cause

Scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis, nervous system problems, hypothyroidism, injuries, and adverse drug reactions like methergine and ergot are some of the conditions that could be the culprits. Some individuals who experience Raynaud’s phenomenon also have migraines, vasospastic (variant) angina pectoris, and pulmonary hypertension (pulmonary hypertension). This correlation raises the possibility that all these illnesses share a common etiology for arterial spasm. Arterial spasm can be brought on by anything that activates the sympathetic nervous system, such as mental stress or exposure to the cold.

Symptoms

Cold fingers and toes are just one symptom of Raynaud’s illness. The severity and length of the signs and symptoms vary. Raynaud’s illness signs include:

  • Cold fingers;
  • Pale, blue, or red skin color changes in response to cold or tension;
  • dull or stabbing pain that transforms to burning agony after warming up or releasing stress.

Usually white at first, the affected areas can eventually turn blue, and your sensation of touch becomes numb. The affected areas become redder, sting, or swell as circulation increases. Not every person experiences the same order of changes, and not every change manifests in every person.

Sometimes a seizure will only affect one or two fingers or toes. Although it typically affects the fingers or toes, it can also impact the nose, lips, ears, and even the nipples. Less than a minute or perhaps several hours may pass before the described phenomena occurs.

In most cases, the fingers or toes do not ache, but numbness, itching, or a tingling feeling frequently develops instead. The color and sensation of the hands return to normal after warming them. The skin on the fingers or toes, however, can permanently alter and turn smooth, shiny, and hard if patients have long-term Raynaud’s phenomenon (particularly those with scleroderma). On the tips of the fingers or toes, tiny, uncomfortable sores might develop.

Treatment

By insulating their body from the cold, their hands, and their feet, patients can manage lesser forms of Raynaud’s illness. They can also take light sedatives. Smoking must end because nicotine narrows blood arteries. Techniques for relaxation can lessen vasospasm in some people. Prazosin or nifedipine are typically used to treat Raynaud’s disease. Pentoxifylline, methyldopa, and phenoxybenzamine can also be helpful. The sympathetic nerves around the arteries may occasionally be cut if patients’ problems become more severe over time, resulting in increased incapacity, and other treatments and medications are ineffective. Even though this operation can ease symptoms, the benefits only persist for one to two years. In general, people with Raynaud’s illness benefit more from this procedure, known as a sympathectomy, than those with Raynaud’s phenomenon.

It is possible to manage Raynaud’s syndrome and disease, but you must follow some self-care and prevention guidelines. Here are some tips:

  • Exercise on a regular basis will help to speed up the process and enhance circulation.
  • Poor circulation can also be treated with regular massage.
  • You might need to boost your diet with magnesium, antioxidants, vitamins B and E, and important fatty acids.
  • Try to take soothing baths in warm, but not too hot, water at least three times per week, depending on the circumstances.
  • Eliminate known seizure inducers. Quit smoking; it causes artery narrowing.
  • Wearing layers will help you effectively manage your condition and the heat generated by your body’s less well-circulated areas.
  • The best materials for heat retention include wool, silk, and polypropylene.
  • Try to use gloves and socks to prevent your hands and feet from freezing.
  • You can benefit from specialized gloves and socks made of celliant fibers.
  • Try to increase physical activity during an attack with exercises that can boost circulation.
  • Regarding the daily consumption of multivitamin-mineral preparations, see your doctor.
  • Cayenne pepper, ginger, coriander, cloves, and cinnamon are a few warming spices you can include in your diet.
  • You can also have a daily cup of tea brewed with the herbs.