Scleroderma is an autoimmune disorder in which the body forms excess collagen that causes the skin and organ tissues to become thick and hard. According to the Scleroderma Foundation, in the early stages, those afflicted with this disease may awaken in the mornings to swollen, sausage-like fingers. Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for scleroderma. Since this disease affects each person differently, treatment is focused on the symptoms and issues each individual patient experiences.
2. Sickle Cell Disease
According to the CDC, swelling of the hands and feet is one of the first symptoms of sickle cell disease. Individuals with this disease have abnormal hemoglobin molecules, known as hemoglobin S, that form a crescent shape rather than the typical spherical shape. Hemoglobin S is a stiff, inflexible type of hemoglobin that can break down and become lodged in small blood vessels. This prevents oxygen-rich blood from reaching the tissues that need it and can result in organ damage. Treatment options for sickle cell disease may include antibiotics, pain medications, blood transfusions, bone marrow transplant, and experimental gene therapy.
1. Warm Temperatures
Sometimes, all it takes is warm, muggy temperatures to trigger swelling in your hands or fingers. In addition to sweating, your body may use other mechanisms to try to cool you off. For example, the blood vessels in your hands may swell in an attempt to combat the effects of a sweltering day. As your blood vessels expand, they release more heat from the surface of your skin. You can help keep your body cool by wearing light, breathable fabrics. Furthermore, staying hydrated, using a fan, and staying out of the sun on a hot day can help you cool down.