If you have Raynaud’s disease, walking into a building where the conditioned air hits you like an icy blast can trigger an attack that leaves you with cold feet and toes—even in our hot Phoenix area climate. The disease causes your blood vessels to spasm in response to cold temps or stress, and constricts the flow of blood.
Are there things you can do to deal with your cold toes? Definitely! One of the best ways is to improve circulation with exercise. Exercise also tackles the second trigger of Raynaud’s syndrome—it helps relieve stress. Here are five activities to get you started:
- Take breaks at work. This is especially important if you sit all day at a desk. Set a timer and get up every hour to do a few stretches and walk around the room or down the hall.
- Go dancing. Whether your choice is line dancing at the local bar or swing dancing at your dance club, it’s a great way to get exercise and relax with friends at the same time. You can even show your grandkids how to do the Watusi or the Twist!
- Go for a bike ride. Mapmyride.com is a great place to start. Just put Chandler or Gilbert, AZ in the search bar and find local routes suggested by fellow bikers.
- Start a walking or running routine. You can check out local clubs for beginners (Gilbert is here, Chandler here; you can also search for someplace closer to you) to find others just starting and start safely and gradually. Or, just take a walk around the block every night and gradually increase your distance.
- Take a yoga class. This discipline that combines stretching poses and mindful breathing can do wonders for your circulation as well as reduce stress that could trigger a Raynaud’s attack.
Just remember to do any exercise safely. Always wear shoes that fit well, with room for the toes to wiggle and no friction hot spots that can damage your tender skin. Socks that cushion and draw away moisture are also helpful.We can offer you much more information about Raynaud’s and how to deal with it. Learn how to improve circulation and increase your comfort by calling Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists of Arizona in Chandler, AZ at (480) 963-9000, or in Gilbert at (480) 981-1800 for an appointment.