Do you feel your hands icy cold, while you are just sitting on a couch and watching television and the weather is also not cold?
There can be numerous health conditions that can lead to cold hands such as neurovascular, endocrine, and cardiovascular issues. Also, those with anemia, lupus, scleroderma, thyroid, poor circulation and nervous system disorder are susceptible to cold hands. In other healthy people, it might just be the body’s natural response to the cold environment that is not a cause of concern. (1)
If the hand and feet are excessively cold or if only one hand or foot is cold all the time, it can be due to underlying blood vessel disease and a healthcare physician should be consulted.
8 Reasons Why Your Hands Are Cold All The Time
There are various causes of cold hands. The body has a particular baseline temperature that responds to cold temperatures leading to cold hands.
The common health conditions that can lead to cold hands are:
Anemia is a condition in which there are few red blood cells in the body that function properly. It is caused by iron deficiency.
Due to iron deficiency, there is a lack of hemoglobin (iron-rich protein) that transports oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. This can lead to cold hands.
Eating iron-rich foods and iron supplements can help relieve this condition.
Diabetes can lead to the following condition that may cause cold hands:
- Poor circulation is a symptom of diabetes that affects the blood flow to the extremities and makes the hands and feet cold.
- Heart disease is at an increased risk in people with diabetes and may occur due to the narrowing of blood vessels. It may lead to cold hands.
- Nerve damage is another major complication that can occur in those with unmanaged blood sugar levels. It leads to the feeling of pins and needles and may lead to cold hands.
In order to avoid these conditions, it is important to keep the blood sugar levels under control.
Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland is underactive and does not produce enough thyroid hormones. It affects the metabolic functioning of the body.
4. Raynaud’s Syndrome
Raynaud’s syndrome is another condition that may lead to cold hands and feet due to the narrowing of the arteries in the hand and feet.
It may lead to a change in the color of fingers to white, blue, or red. The condition is triggered by cold temperature and stress.
Most of the people suffering from this condition do not require any treatment, which includes widening the blood vessels to improve circulation.
5. Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Vitamin B12 deficiency can affect the functioning of the nerve leading to neurological symptoms that include cold hand and feet and numbness and tingling.
It is also important for maintaining healthy red blood cells. it can be found naturally in meat and dairy products.
Smoking leads to injury to the blood vessels and can narrow them. This contributes to cold fingers and toes.
Smoking for long can damage the blood vessels in the heart making it hard for the heart to pump blood.
Therefore smoking can also be a reason for cold hands.
7. Arterial Disease
Narrowing of the blood vessels can lead to reduced blood flow to the extremities making them cold to touch, even if the weather outside is not that cold.
8. Other Conditions
There are a few other factors that can cause cold hands such as:
- Bacterial and viral infections that may lead to fever and cold hands
- Anxiety can lead to cold hands
- There is also a connection seen between chronic indigestion and cold hands and feet. (2)
- Other chronic conditions such as high and low blood pressure and painful periods can lead to cold hands. (3)
If you get cold hands and feet very frequently irrespective of the outside weather, it becomes important to consult a doctor. There might be an underlying condition that needs to be treated.