Managing Raynaud's Phenomenon


A couple of months after I was diagnosed with SLE I was also diagnosed with Raynaud's Phenomenon. At first it was only happening when I was going outdoors on a cold day and I forgot to put on my mittens. I was hoping that with the weather getting nicer here, that the issues would settle down, but in recent months they are actually seeming worse.

My Raynaud's acts up when ever I touch anything cold. It is worst when I am eating. I have resorted to using a coffee sleeve to drink any thing cold. The other day, I was eating a sandwich for lunch that had been refrigerated, and that triggered it too.

My Rheumy is trying to avoid medication due to the fact that it would lower my blood pressure to an unhealthy level. So I am trying to come up with ways to keep my hands warm. I have been wearing my mittens to pull anything out of the freezer. But putting on gloves to eat seems unsanitary.

I am wondering if anyone has any ideas.



Hello Erynn,

I have Raynaud's Phenomenon and i was diagnosed with that before my DLE/SLE and other things besides as i was born with Lupus.

Regarding what you've put not all people suffer Raynaud's Phenomenon the same...yes winter is identical your body and hands can never get warm, so come winter i never hardly go out as my fingers turn to a form of frost bite besides my feet and toes and i get red blood spots on my toes underneath and my fingers cut open by the joints and go deep, i have to type in White cotton gloves and you can buy them off ebay it works out cheaper but moisten your hands first because when you put on the gloves it holds a form of heat.

Regarding summer my hands are still freezing i can't wash myself in hot water as it burns my hands and if i shower luke warm is to cold so if i adjust it to hot i'm dodging about under the heat....regarding food from fridges like yourself i have no trouble that way i surpose it's because my hands are permentantley cold.

It's weird how it function reagrding the hands i can put my hands on the radiators burning hot and it does'nt burn my hands, i can hold a tin out the oven and that does'nt burn my hands.

I don't know if your the same but i have to keep my nails short if i grow them they feel like they're ready to lift off, i've got the purple colour up my nails and underneath them also.

The hospital for cold weather have given me battery operated gloves that grip your wrist and the gloves warm up to open the vessels in the fingers but i also have damaged nerves which does'nt help.

I've been looking up for you though on handling cold thinks and here's some suggestions for you.

For example, use a towel or gloves when removing food from the freezer or working with cold food besides eating food you must wear gloves and also keep a pair of loose fitting rubber gloves on the refrigerator door so you don't accidently stick your hand in to grab some food without protecting your fingers. Also keep a pair of rubber gloves next to the sink so you can test the water temperature without freezing or burning your fingertips.

Cold vegetables and fruits can also cause problems, so take them out the fridge of the morning. Sticking your hands in a preheated small convection oven is a great way to warm them up. It usually takes only a few seconds to get a nice toasty feeling, It’s a good way for you to warm your hands up enough to do some cooking.

For Raynauds what we have doctor’s usually use blood pressure tablets with the correct amount to help your system and open up vessels.

Terri xxx

Hmmm I have the same problem. I have tried several things to do when my hands are cold or hot whilst eating. First of all, immediatly before trying to eat something cold, I run the hottest water my water heater can produce for several minutes. That seems to help until halfway thru the mean, then I excuse myself and do my hot water jag again.

The other thing I tried to do, from the days 3 years ago when I was told I had 'arthritis, is I purchased one of those paraffin baths, which you put your hands in it for 5 dunks, put on a plastic mitten after that. If you can handle eating in mittens, I would really suggest that. If you are right before eating (5) mins or so, do the paraffin bath. The heat absorbs into your skin, and when you take the mitts off, your hands are quite warm and able to handle things. It requires 2 blocks of paraffin that you get at your local beauty supply shoppe, and also comes in several soothing scents,,lavender, eucaplitis (so...brain fog).

Perhaps this will help. Let me know. Soft Hugs, Judi