Overnight travel can be convenient because it enables you to sleep, get to your destination quickly, and have more time during the day. However, traveling may be a little harder for menopausal women who are experiencing night sweats and can not control their environments.
When you're traveling by bus, plane, or train, you have little control over air conditioning and windows, and your seat may feel uncomfortable and cramped. How can you cope with night sweats while traveling overnight? Read on to find out.
Overnight Travel: Dealing with Night Sweats
While night sweats are caused by hormone imbalances, they can be triggered by a variety of environmental factors. These can include warm and stuffy environments, spicy and hot foods, and dehydration. Follow these four tips for quick, easy relief from night sweats during overnight travel.
Ask for an Aisle Seat
Window seats provide the best views on airplanes, trains, and buses, but they can also make it more difficult to crawl over other passengers as you make your way to the bathroom. These days, most travel companies allow you to choose your own seat when you purchase your ticket. Try to choose an aisle seat so that you can make a quick exit. You'll be glad to stretch your legs and splash some water on your face if you experience a night sweat.
Dress in Layers
Unless you're traveling in a car, you may not always be able to open your window for some fresh air. To remedy this, dress for your overnight trip in comfortable, breathable layers. When you are hot, you can peel layers off for quick relief, and then put them back on when you cool down.
Pass on the Coffee and Tea
It's best to avoid tea and coffee drinks during overnight travel because warm drinks and caffeine can trigger night sweats. Instead, opt for something cool, refreshing and decaffeinated, like water or juice. Keep a bottle of water with you to stay hydrated and to turn to for quick relief.
Pack an Emergency Relief Kit
Make sure whichever bag you have with you contains your emergency relief essentials: deodorant, moist cloths, small towels, and bottled water. You can take this with you to the bathroom and regain your composure after an episode. Take some music with you so that you can easily fall back asleep.
If you are looking for more permanent relief from your menopausal night sweats, you might consider making simple lifestyle and dietary changes. Click on the links below for more information about treatments for menopausal night sweats.
- Boston Women's Health Collective. "Hot Flashes, Night Sweats and Sleep Disturbances". Our Bodies, Ourselves, 2006.
- The National Institute of Health. "Signs of the Menopausal Transition" www.nih.gov
- Von Muhlen, DG, et al. "A community-based study of menopause symptoms and estrogen replacement in older women". Maturitas. Sept 1995; 22(2):71-8.