ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Causes and Treatment of Swollen Fingers and Hands

Updated on January 19, 2015

Why are my fingers swollen?

Swollen hands and fingers could be due to a number of reasons, but the most common reason is due to fluid retention in the affected part. It may be associated with joint swelling and swollen legs and may be present on one side or even on both sides. Sometimes, it may be due to trauma, but the actual cause is difficult to pinpoint. Identifying the probable causes and using some of the home remedies may help in alleviating the problem to some extent.

Common causes of swollen hands and fingers

  • Since the hands as well as the fingers are the most exploited parts of our body, it may be prone to injuries due to overuse.
  • During pregnancy, swollen hands and fingers are a common sight. This is due to increased water retention in the body. This is something that may also be noticed in women with premenstrual syndrome.
  • In elderly citizens, swelling may be noticed in the hands and legs as well. When there is water buildup in the tissues, it leads to swelling.
  • Sometimes, even morning walkers report swollen hands and fingers. This happens during the beginning of their exercise regime, but it subsides during the day. It could be due to a condition called idiopathic edema. The exact reason behind the fluid buildup in this situation is unknown.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome is another major cause for swelling in the arms.

Swollen hand and fingers

Less common but more serious causes of swollen hands and fingers

If there are underlying causes such as liver or kidney disease, this may also lead to swollen hands and fingers.This may also cause swelling in the other parts as well. Most of these major organs take care of the filtration process in the body and help in eliminating toxic wastes from our body. If these organs begin malfunctioning, it may lead to water retention in some body parts.

The other underlying causes could be thyroid malfunction, heart ailments, blood disorders, arthritis, or infections. However, if the problems are serious in nature, the swelling may also be associated with other symptoms that may be quite prominent.

Doing simple hand exercises and stretches may be helpful in some cases, but if the condition keeps persisting, it is important to seek medical intervention and rule out other possibilities as well.

Medical conditions that cause numbness in fingers

Medical conditions that cause numbness in fingers are:

  • carpal tunnel syndrome
  • diabetes
  • migraines
  • multiple sclerosis
  • seizure
  • stroke
  • transient ischemic attack (TIA)
  • underactive thyroid
  • Reynaud’s phenomenon

Sometimes you may experience numbness in your fingers rather than swelling

Causes of Numbness in Fingers

Numbness and tingling sensations occur anywhere in the body, but are often felt in the fingers.

Remaining in the same position for an extended period of time can cause numbness in the fingers. Other factors such as injuring a nerve, pressure on spinal nerves or poor circulation will also cause numbness. Nutritional imbalances like irregular levels B12, calcium, potassium, sodium or vitamin deficiencies easily lead to numb fingers. Exposure to radiation, toxic levels of lead, abuse of alcohol or tobacco and certain medications may also cause numbness in fingers.

Medical treatment for numbness in fingers

The basic cause of numbness or tingling in the fingers should be identified and treated by a doctor. Treating any underlying condition may reverse numbness or prevent it from becoming worse. For example, certain exercises may be beneficial for someone with carpal tunnel syndrome.

Due to decreased sensation, numb fingers are prone to accidental injury, regardless of the cause. Numb fingers need to be protected from cuts, bumps, bruises, burns or other injuries.

Contact 911 or go to the emergency room if you notice that numbness occurs shortly after an injury to the head, neck or back. Other symptoms that require immediate medical attention are weakness, paralysis, loss of bladder or bowl control, loss of muscle control, confusion, loss of consciousness, slurred speech, changes in vision, weakness or trouble walking.

Numbness or tingling in the fingers without cause may require an appointment with a doctor. Other symptoms that often accompany numbness in fingers are rashes, dizziness, muscle spasms, frequent urination or pain in the neck, pain in the arms, pain in the fingers.

Medical tests that determine the causes of numbness include blood tests, imaging technology (CT scan or MRI) or x-ray. An electromyography and nerve conduction study measures how the muscles respond to nerve stimulation. A lumbar puncture will rule out disorders of the central nervous system, while an ultrasound of blood vessels in the neck determines the risk of TIA or stroke. Vascular ultrasound and a cold stimulation test will confirm or rule out Reynaud’s phenomenon.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)