Are Enlarged Knuckles a Sign of Aging?

Worried that your knuckles suddenly enlarged? Find out the possible reasons here.

Enlarged knuckles aging

You need your hand to do your daily tasks. You use it to open the door, cook, and even tie your shoes. But since you use it so much, there can be instances that your hand will become injured. Also, as you age, there is a tendency that your hands will become less flexible and weaker. When this happens, you will have a hard time doing the things around you, making every movement related to your hand difficult.

Knuckles and Knuckle Cracking

Your knuckles are the joints found in your fingers. The knuckles that are located at the base of your fingers are called 1st or major knuckles. Then, the knuckles located at the mid finger are called minor knuckles.

Knuckle cracking is normal. A lot of people do it and sometimes they enjoy doing it. Some like to crack their knuckles when they are nervous or it’s just become a habit. Whenever you crack your knuckles, you will notice that there is a noise. The reason for this is that whenever you do this behavior, you increase the space between your finger joints. The gas bubbles in the joints then burst or collapse, causing the noise.

There is a lot of researches conducted to see the effects of knuckle cracking and it seems that it is harmless. However, there are some people who believe that your knuckles can grow big every time you crack them. If you are one of the many people who believe that, we’re here to say that it is just a myth. There is no link between knuckle cracking and enlarged knuckles.


Your hands and knuckles work hand in hand. Since both are required for you do to basic tasks, it is safe to say that they should be both in great shape. Sadly, there are instances wherein both can get injured. One condition that you can get is arthritis.

The first sign that will appear in this condition is pain. Your fingers will start to have a burning and dull sensation. The more you use your hand, the more you will feel pain. Over time, your cartilage will wear away so even if you do not use your hand, there is a huge chance that you will feel pain. In worse cases, you will not be able to sleep as the pain in your hands will continue.

Another sign is swelling. As you probably know, when your hand swells, it may appear bigger and puffier than usual. This could mean that you already have arthritis in your hands.


Other than arthritis, you can also get enlarged knuckles when you have gout. This is an ailment that you can get when you have an abnormal level of uric acid. The possible cause for this is increased the production of uric acid or reduced excretion in your body.

In the event that you have too much uric acid in your body, except that there is a development of uric acid crystals that are then placed in your joints and knuckles. During this time, your knuckles will become swollen and appear to be enlarged.

Bouchard’s nodes

It is a type of osteoarthritis in your hand. This condition happens when there is an enlargement in the joints of your fingers. The bone tissues can become crooked or misaligned too as time goes by. There is a feeling of pain too, but there can be times when your hands are not painful.

Once the doctor diagnoses you with the condition, it is best that you rest your joints well. You will be asked to take pain relievers too. Using heat and ice therapy can make the treatment process fast.


According to several studies, your body tends to change as you age. Your posture, walking pattern, hair, and skin. With this, it can be said that even your body can change. Women, especially those who underwent menopause, can lose bone density or mass as they age.

Your bones also lose other minerals and calcium. When this happens, the bones can become brittle and you are most likely to experience deformity, stiffness, pain, and inflammation. In the worst cases, you can end up getting arthritis.


The abovementioned were the possible reasons you have enlarged knuckles. We also answered the question if aging is related to it and it is yes. Fortunately, there is a way for you to prevent this from happening.

Since aging cannot be stopped, you can take care of your hand well through exercise. It has been said that exercise can prevent an issue related to your muscles, bones, and joints. Considering this, you need to find an exercise program that can keep your hands in good shape. Doing this can make your bones strong too.

You need to watch out for your eating habits as well. Be sure to eat foods that are healthy and rich in calcium and vitamin D. In fact, if you are a man or woman who is at least 70 years old, you need to have 1,200 mg of calcium daily. Increasing your vitamin D is helpful for the bones.


There are a lot of reasons you can end up having enlarged knuckles. It can be because you have an ailment or you are aging. There is also a tendency that you use your hands too much for it to become tired and end up getting a condition.

The best way that you can prevent all these from happening is by exercising your hands regularly. You can try workouts that can improve your hand’s flexibility, balance, and strength. Change your eating habits too if that is possible. Go for healthy foods and those rich in vitamins and calcium.

It is also recommended that you get your ailment treated immediately. The doctor will be the one who will provide you with the medicines and treatments that you need to do. All in all, enlarged knuckles can be a sign of aging or it can be a signal telling you that you have a serious condition.

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