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Lynn asked...

Why does my mother get such cold hands?

My mother is 88 and always telling me she is cold, her hands are always cold. Is there a reason for this?

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The answer

There can be several reasons for your mother’s cold hands. Common causes can be due to anaemia, diabetes, blood disorders, reduced circulation, which occurs as a natural part of the aging process as the veins and arteries narrow due to hardening and other causes may include thyroid problems, low blood pressure or medication side effects.

Things to look for that might suggest reduced circulation for example are paleness or blueness of her hands and fingers. Given the wide range of possible causes it is worthwhile asking for her GP to assess this problem, some people naturally have cooler hands and feet but if this is a relatively new problem the GP should be able to assist diagnosing the cause.

Meanwhile use of a warm wheat bag or heat pad may help to reduce any discomfort she may have, and ensuring she is warmly dressed as appropriate to the weather are all simple measures that may help to alleviate the problem in the meantime.

Answered by Health at Hand nurses.


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