Middle-aged women are likely to encounter many menopause symptoms as they transition to infertility. Unfortunately, one of the most common experiences is hot flushes, a consequence of the hormonal changes felt during the transition.
What Are Hot Flushes?
Hot flushes are common symptoms of menopause that can leave women feeling hot and flustered. Episodes can last anywhere between a few seconds to several minutes. Research has shown that women who experience hot flushes during the early stages of menopause are less likely to develop heart disease later.
What Are Irregular Periods?
During the early stages of menopause irregular periods are experienced differently by different women. Some women may have more than one period in a month while others miss out completely. Keep reading to learn more about the relationship between hot flushes and periods.
Hot Flushes during Periods
Hot flushes occur during the menstrual cycle and continue for a year or two after perimenopause has begun. In some cases, women may also experience hot flushes after menopause has started.
Tips for Handling Hot Flushes
Women can find relief from hot flushes by following some of these simple tips.
Drinking alcohol, consuming caffeine, eating spicy foods, or smoking can raise your body temperature and result in hot flushes. Warm environments and tight clothing can also trigger hot flushes.
Dress in layers
Layering your clothing can allow you more comfort as on even the coldest of days, you can remove your coat or sweater after a hot flush episode and find relief. Try to wear natural fabrics (e.g., cotton) as these materials help prevent hot flushes.
Take deep and slow breaths from your abdomen for 15 to 20 minutes regularly. This will help you manage stress and prevent hot flushes. Relaxation techniques, such as meditation and yoga, will also help.
It is important to stay hydrated. Drink ice water if you feel an incoming hot flush. Regularly consuming cold beverages will also help reduce the frequency and intensity of hot flushes.
Keep your room at a cool temperature with the help of a fan or open windows. Keeping a glass of ice water on your nightstand will also help you keep hot flushes under control.
Many women rely on herbal remedies to help them prevent hot flushes. Soy for example contains phytoestrogens, which mimic the estrogen in your body. The disadvantage of these remedies however, is that they don't encourage the body to produce its own hormones.
Hot flushes can be a frustrating symptom of the menstrual cycle and perimenopause. Click on the following link to discover more treatments for hot flushes.
- Sikon, Andrea and Holly Thacker M.D. "Treatment for Menopausal Hot Flashes". Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine. July 2004: 71 (7).
- Hot flashes ... in January". Canadian Medical Association Journal. 2004: 170 (1).
- Miller, Heather and Rose Maria Li, M.D. "Measuring Hot Flashes: Summary of a National Institutes of Health Workshop". Conference report. Mayo Clinic. June 2004: 79.