Hot flashes are the most common symptoms of menopause and perimenopause. Most common complaints about menopause are hot flashes and night sweats. Around three quarters of women in perimenopause or prior to menopause experience this problem.
According to the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), in menopause stage women will experience such symptoms for six months to five years. So, how deal with hot flashes? The following information will help you deal with hot flashes.
What is a Hot Flash?
Hot flash is a quick feeling characterized by a red, flushed face and sweating. The specific cause of hot flash is not known but might occur due to some changes in circulation. In hot flash, you may experience:
- Itchy in your fingers
- Heart beating faster than usual
- Skin feeling warm
- Face getting red or flushed
- Sweating, especially in the upper body
What Triggers Hot Flash?
The following are the few common things that can trigger hot flash:
- Consumption of alcohol
- Caffeine intake
- Having spicy foods
- Stress or anxious
- Tight clothing
How to Prevent Hot Flashes?
There are few things that can help prevent hot flashes, they include:
- Stay cool
- Keep your bedroom premises cool at night. Try to wear light layers of clothes with natural fibers such as cotton
- Try deep and slow abdominal breathing. Practice deep breathing for 15 minutes in the morning and 15 minutes in the evening and at the start of hot flashes
- Short exercises such as dancing, swimming and walking can help
- Chill pillows can give you relaxation
What are the Non-Prescription Treatment Options?
- Vitamin B complex
- Vitamin E
What are the Prescribed Treatments?
- Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
- Low-dose depression drugs like fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), or venlafaxine (Effexor)
- Clonidine, a blood pressure medication
- Gabapentin, an antiseizure drug
- Brisdelle, a paroxetine formula specifically for hot flashes
Even though there are few alternatives, therapies like botanical and herbal will help in relieving hot flashes. However, you need to consult your doctor before opting for these since these are associated with certain side effects when taken with other medications. Few Botanicals and herbs that may help relieve hot flashes include:
Plant estrogens found in soy products have weak estrogen like effects that may relieve from hot flashes. Hence, only soy foods are recommended.
Few studies found that black cohosh may help cure hot flashes and night seats for short period. Gastrointestinal upset is associated with this herbal product.
Evening Primrose Oil
It is another botanical that is often used to cure hot flash but there is no scientific evidence to prove this. Nausea and diarrhea are some of the side effects. This should not be taken by women taking certain medications such as blood thinners.
Even though there is no particular proof stating that flaxseed reduces menopause symptoms, especially hot flashes, it is believed that these seeds work for hot flash.
Lifestyle changes can leave an impact on the body. Leading a healthy lifestyle can reduce the incidence or severity of hot flashes and reduce the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis. The following are the few ways that can help improve your health:
- Well-balanced diet
- Regular exercise
- Quit smoking
All the above mentioned methods can help you get relief from hot flashes in a better way.