You're going about your daily business. All of a sudden, you're flooded with heat and break out into a sweat. You're experiencing one of the most distressing symptoms of menopause - the hot flashes. Menopause hot flashes not only disrupt your day, they interrupt your sleep, your mood and your relationships.
Why Do Menopause Hot Flashes Symptoms Occur?
Your body’s temperature is regulated by an area of the brain known as the hypothalamus – the same part of the endocrine system responsible for hormone regulation. As we age, the hypothalamus loses sensitivity to requests for hormone production from the ovaries.
Hormone levels begin to descend, bringing the body away from its youthful, natural hormonal balance. Pretty soon, you may notice the telltale signs of menopause, including weight gain, memory lapses, reddening skin, urinary problems and the dreaded hot flash.
The Trouble with Menopause Hot Flashes Treatment
Whether you experience your menopause hot flashes at night or during the day, you need relief. In desperation, many women turn to hormone replacement therapy – known as HRT – to provide hormones their bodies no longer produce naturally. Unfortunately, while HRT can be effective as a menopause hot flashes treatment, its effects can be incredibly harsh on the body, causing side effects that can mirror and compound the symptoms of menopause.
Additionally, HRT comes with increased risks, potentially causing heart problems, strokes, and even raising your risk of endometrial, ovarian and breast cancers. In fact, various forms of HRT have been linked to the development of blood clots, gallstones, skin conditions, weight gain, mood dysregulation and chronic or severe headaches.
Other women turn to herbal remedies – such as black cohosh, soy or chasteberry – in order to alleviate menopause menopause hot flashes symptoms without the risks. Unfortunately, despite their natural origins, many menopause hot flashes natural remedies simply haven’t yet been proven to work in relieving hot flashes. Some herbal menopause hot flash treatments may bring a small measure of relief, but hardly spare menopausal women from enduring weekly – or even daily – hot flashes.
Monitor what you drink and eat. If you are prone to hot flashes, what you consume into your body can directly affect their occurrence and intensity. Avoid alcohol and caffeinated beverages. Hot and spicy foods can also serve as triggers for hot flashes and are best to eschew while predisposed to hot flashes.
Stay cool. Keep cold packs available that may be applied to your face and neck when feeling the onset of a hot flash. Dress in layers so that outer garments may be removed when you feel your body becoming warm. Keep your work area or home well ventilated with proper air flow.
Stay relaxed. Tense and anxious situations can trigger hot flashes. Deep breathing exercises can help to ward away stress and the possibility of suffering a hot flash. Implementing other daily relaxation techniques such as yoga, tai chi and simply walking for 30 minutes will reduce the intensity and frequency of hot flashes.