If you’ve ever had a hot flash–red, flushed face; rapid heart rate; dripping sweat–you’re not alone. About 75 percent of menopausal and pre-menopausal women report being seized by these massive heat waves, and whether you’ve had one or witnessed one, you know they aren’t pleasant, especially when balmy weather exacerbates symptoms.
Why You Get Hot Flashes
As hormones change and estrogen levels decrease, your body can mistakenly think it’s overheating. In response to the alert, your body reacts by pumping more blood, which causes your heart rate to increase and blood vessels to dilate. In addition, your sweat glands turn on the waterworks to help cool you down. At his point, your body cools off when it doesn’t need to, resulting in a sweaty, uncomfortable situation. Depending on frequency and scope, these flashes can impede daily activity, causing difficulty sleeping, increased anxiety, and intimacy issues.
Ways to Turn Down the Heat
Fortunately, you don’t have to live in fear of hot flashes. Although you can’t make them stop completely, there are ways to control their ferocity.
- Watch what you drink – Keeping an iced drink handy can help lower your body temperature, making heat less likely to aggravate your system.
- Take a deep breath – Stress can intensify hot flashes and never helps an already unpleasant situation. Practicing yoga, deep breathing or meditation can help you relax and stay mentally prepared.
- Cut stressors like tobacco, caffeine, alcohol and sugar – Each of these is linked to increased hot flashes. Plus, they’re just bad for you.
- Consider alternative treatments – Menopausal specialists can help you determine where you sit in your hormonal evolution and might prescribe hormone replacement therapy or another helpful treatment. You can also look into homeopathic remedies like black cohosh, Ginseng, red clover, or evening primrose oil.
- Dress accordingly – Dressing in breathable fabrics that you can layer and peel off when the moment strikes will help you control unwanted warmth. Think bare feet on a tile floor, cotton tank tops, and linen shorts.
- Watch your weight – Overweight women tend to suffer more from heat-related menopausal symptoms, so shedding extra pounds might help you cope.
- Keep it chilly – Eat a popsicle or drape an ice-cold rag around your neck. Whatever it takes for you to cool off.
Eagle’s Landing OB/GYN in Stockbridge, GA wants you and your family to thrive. For any questions or concerns regarding pregnancy, parenting or related issues, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 770-474-1919.