Why are my hands so cold?

Any medical reason for this? I can take the cold really well, but my hands become numb much quicker than everyone elses. They also stay cold for a long period of time. Any ideas?

Do you smoke?

Smoking tends to limit the blood circulation to the hands and feet, making them feel cold.

Do they turn blue and get numb, or just cold? Could be Reynaud’s (sp?) syndrome, which is a problem my wife has when it gets cold. I think it has something to do with the blood vessels in the extremeties constricting, decreasing blood flow and causing numbness.

I used to wonder the same thing. I can take the cold really well, feeling fine with just a T-shirt. Maybe a light jacket to get to the car during cold New England winters. But if I’m so good at dealing with the cold, why are my hands always freezing?

My hands were always cold BECAUSE I could take the cold so well. My hands are always frigid when I’m wearing too little clothing. If I’m wearing a T-shirt in the cold weather, my hands are cold. If I put on a sweater, my hands warm up. Try it - I think you’ll find the same thing.

Me? I put up with the cold hands. I hate sweaters.

Do a search on Raynaud’s Syndrome

My Mother has it.

From - http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/diseases/raynaud.html

My chainsaws manual specifialy stated that the handles where isolated/rubber mounted to try to prevent this problem. Surprised me.

Not to say there can’t be some malady making for cold hands but there are mundane causes too.

Your body has inbuilt safeguards in response to freezing to death. Among those is restricting blood flow to your extremities thus trying to keep warm blood in your chest and head where the important parts are. Not to mention extremities lose heat more quickly.

So, you may feel warm and fine because your body is making it that way while your hands and feet start getting cold.

A somewhat odd fix to cold feet/hands is to put a hat on. I thought this was nuts till a woman told me to do that while I was skiing and complaining about cold toes. Put on a hat and sure enough 20 minutes later my toes were warm. Turns out you lose a LOT of body heat through your head. Using something to mitigate heat loss via your head lets your body feel the rpessur is off to keep your head warm and will turn the flow back on to extremities (thus warming them up).

In general making your torso and head warmer should translate to warmer fingers and toes.

I don’t know, but is it because your head never feels cold that you never see the need to keep it warm? Sure your face and ears will get cold, but it seems like the top part of your head (where the brain is) never gets cold to the bone like the hands do. That would make a lot of sense for keeping you alive. But if it isn’t insulated, I guess a lot of warm blood is used in comparison to if it were insulated. This warmth could be used for other, less important, parts?

Is that right?

I was gonna suggest checking for Raynaud’s. My Mom’s got it.

Along with wearing hats is this. These have kept me warmer then anything I can remember (short of a hat I guess). It’s basically just a fleece (so it’s warm, but air moves through it very easily). That you wear around your neck and up over your mouth and nose. I have to assume it works in that when you exhale your breath heats up that part infront of your mouth and nose, then when you inhale, the air is slightly warmer and more humid. Whatever it does, it really works. The first time I wore one sking, I was able to take my hat and jacket off since it kept me so warm.

I have three of those. They are the way to go in cold weather. They can also double as a hat (if your coat has a hood).

Yep…that is right.

Your body has innate survival mechanisms to deal with freezing to death as I mentioned before. As you start to cool off the body restricts blood flow to the extremities so it can maintain temperature in the most important parts…heart/lungs and especially the brain. It is this mechanism that has, in part at least, helped people survive severe hypothermia. The downside is those people often have toes/feet/fingers/hands amputated from severe frostbite. But they lived which by your body’s calculation is a better tradeoff.