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What Can Cause Hot Flashes Besides Menopause

Drugs That Cause Sweating

What medical conditions other than menopause can cause hot flashes?

Some treatment drugs can cause sweating and hot flashes.

These include:

Aromatase inhibitors: Doctors often prescribe these as a hormone therapy to treat various types of breast cancer.

Opioids: A group of very strong pain relievers that can help a person with cancer.

Tamoxifen: This drug treats breast cancer in men and women, and it can help prevent cancer in some women.

Tricyclic antidepressants: These treat symptoms of depression, which often occur with cancer.

Steroids: These can help to reduce swelling and inflammation. Doctors sometimes prescribe them in cancer treatment.

Doctors Call It Flushing

You may think of hot flashes — sudden waves of heat coming from your head, neck, or torso maybe with red, blotchy skin, sweating, and a rapid heartbeat — as something only women get around the time they stop having their period. But this flushing can be the result of many things as your body tries to cool down. Not everyone sweats when they have one, and you may feel chilled afterward.

Perimenopause Symptoms And Signs

Perimenopause describes the time period when a woman is approaching menopause. During this time is when symptoms and signs begin. Examples include, weight gain, vaginal dryness, mood changes, painful sex, and hot flashes.

    The complex hormonal changes that accompany the aging process, in particular the declining levels of estrogen as a woman approaches menopause, are thought to be the underlying cause of hot flashes. A disorder in thermoregulation is responsible for the heat sensation, but the exact way in which the changing hormone levels affect thermoregulation is not fully understood.

    Hot flashes are considered to be a characteristic symptom of the menopausal transition. They also occur in men and in circumstances other than the perimenopause in women as a result of certain uncommon medical conditions that affect the process of thermoregulation. For example, the carcinoid syndrome, which results from a type of endocrine tumor that secretes large amounts of the hormone serotonin can cause hot flashes. Hot flashes can also develop as a side effect of some medications and sometimes occur with severe infections or cancers that may be associated with fevers and/or night sweats.

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    Hot Flushes And Sweats

    Hot flushes and sweats are the most common symptoms of the menopause and can affect three out of every four menopausal women*. Characterised by sudden feelings of heat which seem to come from nowhere and spread upwards through the body, the chest, neck and face, hot flushes and sweats are probably caused by changes in hormone levels which affect the bodys temperature control. Women talked about their experiences of hot flushes and sweats, the effect on their life, and what they did to relieve the symptoms.Hot flushesSome women we talked with had either not had flushes at all, had noticed just occasional mild feelings of warmth lasting seconds, or had simply not been bothered by them. Others, however, had more intense hot flushes which happened throughout the day and night, lasting several minutes or longer and accompanied by sweating, dizziness, light-headedness and heart palpitations. One woman said she had about twenty hot flushes a day; another flushed every ten minutes throughout the day .

    What Causes Hot Flashes

    What medical conditions other than menopause can cause hot ...

    The exact reason why hot flashes happen during menopause isnt clear, , MD, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology and reproductive sciences at Yale Medical School tells Health. But its thought that the decrease in your bodys production of reproductive hormones, including estrogen, during menopause can make you more sensitive to slight changes in body temperature, says Dr. Sholes-Douglas.

    The estrogen hormones fluctuate and, although the total estrogen levels may not be low, there are moments where estrogen levels fall relative to where they were, she explains. This then triggers a change in your blood vessels, which can make you feel hot and sweaty.

    While you can just have a hot flash for seemingly no reason, hot flashes can be exacerbated by things like sugar, stress, spicy foods, and alcohol, says Dr. Sholes-Douglas.

    When you have a hot flash during the night, its often referred to as night sweats. But these are essentially the same, says Dr. Sholes-Douglas. Night sweats tend to wake women up and can make it tough to sleep.

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    What Is Relaxation Breathing

    Deep breathing, relaxation breathing, and paced respiration all refer to a method used to reduce stress. It involves breathing in deeply and breathing out at an even pace. Do this for several minutes while in a comfortable position. You should slowly breathe in through your nose. With a hand on your stomach right below your ribs, you should first feel your stomach push your hand out, and then your chest should fill. Slowly exhale through your mouth, first letting your lungs empty and then feeling your stomach sink back. You can do this almost anywhere and several times during the day, whenever you feel stressed. You can also try this if you feel a hot flash beginning or if you need to relax before falling asleep.

    Food Allergies Or Sensitivities

    Almost all of us experience something like a hot flash when we eat very spicy foods, but alcohol, caffeine, and additives like sulfites are also some common triggers. It is thought that spicy foods that give food some heat and alcohol are vasodilators and expand your blood vessels, Dr. Wider explains. But if you have an unidentified food allergy or intolerance, something else in your diet could be the cause, Battaglino explains.

    Cool off: Pay attention to how your body reacts the next time you ingest any of the foods above and you may find a correlation. If that doesnt help, consider speaking with your doctor or a registered dietitian about a structured elimination diet.

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    Migraine And Cluster Headaches

    These painful and sometimes disabling headaches can also mess with your autonomic nervous system. Your brain isn’t processing messages from the nerves in your head and neck about touch, pain, temperature, and vibration correctly. Your “fight or flight” response may kick in, which gets your blood pumping and widens your airways.

    Tips For Managing Hot Flashes

    What Causes Hot Flashes In Menopause?

    There are a few different treatments you can try to reduce the severity and frequency of hot flashes:;

    Lifestyle changes. Dress in layers that you can remove if you feel a hot flash coming on. It can also help to carry a portable fan to help you cool down.

    Avoid certain foods and drinks. Things like alcohol, spicy foods, and caffeine can make hot flashes worse.

    Stop smoking. If you smoke, it can help to quit. It will reduce your hot flashes and help you stay healthy overall.

    Healthy weight. Keep exercising and try to stay fit. Women who are overweight tend to have more frequent and more severe hot flashes.

    Mind-body practices. Self-calming techniques like mindfulness, meditation, and yoga can help improve menopausal symptoms like hot flashes.;

    Read Also: How Long After Periods Stop Does Menopause Last

    Can Menopause Affect My Sex Drive

    Yes, menopause can affect your sex drive but it doesnt mean your sex life is over.

    Dealing with the physical and emotional symptoms of menopause can make you feel less sexual desire. The symptoms can also affect your sleep and lower your energy which might make you not so into sex. Vaginal dryness and decreased sensation can also feel like a turn-off. Its also normal to feel a range of emotions, including anxiety, sadness, or loss while going through menopause.

    If you lose interest in sex during this time, itll probably come back when your symptoms stop.

    A pretty common symptom that can affect your sexual desire is vaginal dryness, which can make sex uncomfortable or even painful.

    For symptoms that affect your sex life, trying one or more of these things can help:

    • Use water- or silicone-based lube when you have sex. You can buy lube at most drugstores or online.

    • Give your yourself more time to feel aroused. Moisture from being aroused protects sensitive tissues.

    • Have sex and/or masturbate more often. This increases blood flow to your vagina, which helps keep;your vaginal tissue healthy.

    Some people may actually find that they want to have sex MORE after menopause, because they dont have to worry about getting pregnant. This may give you a sense of freedom to enjoy a renewed and exciting sex life.

    Menopause is a natural biological process. And while it marks the end of your ability to get pregnant, it definitely doesnt have to be the end of your sexuality.

    Q: What Causes Hot Flashes

    A:;The exact causes of hot flashes are still unknown, but they are thought to be related to changes in the brains thermoregulatory center, which controls heat production and loss, and is influenced by your hormones. During perimenopause, hormones start acting like a rollercoaster, with progesterone and estrogen levels changing in wide variations. These ups and downs dont settle down until almost 10 years after menopause.

    Read Also: Can You Get Menopause At 20

    What Are The Risks Of Using Hormones For Hot Flashes

    In 2002, a study that was part of the Women’s Health Initiative , funded by the National Institutes of Health, was stopped early because participants who received a certain kind of estrogen with progesterone were found to have a significantly higher risk of stroke, heart attacks, breast cancer, dementia, urinary incontinence, and gallbladder disease.

    This study raised significant concerns at the time and left many women wary of using hormones.

    However, research reported since then found that younger women may be at less risk and have more potential benefits than was suggested by the WHI study. The negative effects of the WHI hormone treatments mostly affected women who were over age 60 and post-menopausal. Newer versions of treatments developed since 2002 may reduce the risks of using hormones for women experiencing the menopausal transition, but studies are needed to evaluate the long-term safety of these newer treatments.

    If you use hormone therapy, it should be at the lowest dose, for the shortest period of time it remains effective, and in consultation with a doctor. Talk with your doctor about your medical and family history and any concerns or questions about taking hormones.

    Other Causes For Hot Flashes

    Can Hot Flashes be Caused by Something Besides Menopause?

    When someone experiences hot flashes, a doctor can tell with a simple blood test if the problem is related to menopause or due to some other reason. Menopause usually occurs in the 50s, so when someone much younger has hot flashes, physicians will often look for additional causes. Some of the most common ones include:

    • Thyroid problems, such as hyperthyroidism, which causes an overabundance of thyroid hormone, can increase the bodys metabolism and lead to hot flashes and sweating. While hypothyroidism is the usual culprit in these cases, non-menopausal hot flashes can also be due to thyroid cancer.
    • Food and drink, including spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol, can trigger hot flashes. While the symptoms appear after a meal or a few drinks, this type of hot flash can often be stopped by eating lighter and limiting or eliminating caffeine and alcohol.
    • Medication can bring on flushing and continue as long as you are taking them; changing medications often makes the condition go away.
    • Stress accompanied by a rush of adrenaline can produce a feeling of warmth like a hot flash, so if you live a stress filled life, you may set off this reaction.
    • Hormone-secreting tumors such as pancreatic tumors override the organs ability to help the body function properly and can lead to hot flashes and sweating.
    • Other conditions such as HIV and tuberculosis can produce symptoms similar to hot flashes and night sweats.

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    Bleeding After Menopause Isnt Considered Normal

    If you Google vaginal bleeding after menopause, the search results are likely to send you into a panic.

    Please dont panic. There are many explanations for spotting after menopause. And despite what Dr. Google says, it does not automatically mean you have cancer.

    According to this study published by JAMA Internal Medicine, postmenopausal bleeding occurs in approximately 90% of women with endometrial cancer; however, only 9% of women with postmenopausal bleeding were diagnosed with endometrial cancer.

    So, why the urgency to see a doctor?;

    Well, endometrial cancer cannot be screened for, which means it can go undetected if symptoms are ignored.;

    So, even though postmenopausal bleeding can occur for a variety of reasons, understanding that it can allow for early detection of endometrial cancer means its always worth investigation.

    Bioidentical Hormone Therapy For Hot Flashes

    There has been increasing interest in recent years in the use of so-called “bioidentical” hormone therapy for perimenopausal women. Bioidentical hormone preparations are medications that contain hormones that have the same chemical formula as those made naturally in the body. The hormones are created in a laboratory by altering compounds derived from naturally-occurring plant products. Some of these so-called bioidentical hormone preparations are U.S. FDA-approved and manufactured by drug companies, while others are made at special pharmacies called compounding pharmacies, which make the preparations on a case-by-case basis for each patient. These individual preparations are not regulated by the FDA, because compounded products are not standardized.

    Advocates of bioidentical hormone therapy argue that the products, applied as creams or gels, are absorbed into the body in their active form without the need for “first pass” metabolism in the liver, and that their use may avoid potentially dangerous side effects of synthetic hormones used in conventional hormone therapy. However, studies to establish the long-term safety and effectiveness of these products have not been carried out.

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    There Is No Escaping The Impact Menopause Will Have On Us Women We Will Come Out Changed

    However, its up to us, exactly how much we let that impact shape us.

    If youd like to start taking back control of your menopause journey, join our The Menopause Effect email list and well send you tips, techniques, research findings and other useful info.;

    P.S.; If you want a bit more than tips and info, check out Dr Michelle Gordons upcoming free Online Menopause Workshop.

    Onward!

    Q: What Is A Hot Flash

    The Other Causes & Remedies for Hot Flashes & Menopause รข Dr.Berg

    A:;Hot flashes are the quick bursts of hot skin and often drenching sweat that last anywhere from 30 seconds to about five minutes. Your face and neck may turn red, your heart rate may increase and you will most likely break out in a sweat. Night sweats are the same thing, only youre asleep and are jolted awake by the heat and sweat sensation consuming your body.

    These sudden bursts, especially at night, can cause fatigue, irritability and even forgetfulness. For 10 to 15 percent of women, hot flashes are so severe that they disrupt normal functions, such as leading a meeting or sticking to a schedule. If you feel your daily activities are impacted by hot flashes, make sure to speak with your gynecologist.

    Also Check: Is Dizziness A Sign Of Menopause

    What Causes Night Sweats

    Night sweats are common is women who are going through perimenopause and menopause. Perimenopause is a normal, natural phase of a womans life. During this time, a womans ovaries produce less estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, and menstrual periods become irregular. The low or changing levels of estrogen in particular are the cause of night sweats.

    Perimenopause usually happens between ages 40 and 50. It is the transition step before menopause. A woman has reached menopause when she hasnt had a period for 12 months in a row. The average age of menopause is 51.

    What Other Life Changes Affect Menopause

    Menopause can be a rough time. In addition to the symptoms that may be tough to deal with, a lot of stressful life changes can happen around the same time as perimenopause and menopause.

    Some changes you may go through during this time in your life include:

    • anxiety about illness, aging, and death

    • anxiety about the future, getting older, and losing independence

    • anxiety about being disabled

    • changes in family, social, and personal relationships

    • changes in identity or body image

    • children leaving home

    • getting divorced or losing a partner

    • having a partner become ill or disabled

    • more responsibility for grandchildren

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    Keep Your Body Moving

    Getting regular exercise is something of a frontline defense when it comes to counteracting the effects of menopause. Not only can staying active substantially reduce your symptoms , but it can also prevent them from appearing in the first place.

    Getting an hour of moderately intense exercise most days of the week can also help you maintain a healthy body weight, and women of a healthy body weight tend to have fewer and less severe hot flashes.

    In the summer months, keep outdoor exercise to the early morning hours when temperatures are relatively low. Avoid exercising close to bedtime, as it can make it harder to get a good nights rest.

    What Causes Hot Flashes In Men

    Are Your Hot Flashes Caused by Something Other Than ...

    There are several reasons that hot flashes could occur in men, including prostate cancer treatment known as androgen deprivation therapy; lifestyle causes such as stress, depression, or anxiety; and medical causes like testosterone levels dropping in middle age.

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    Black Cohosh For Hot Flashes

    Black cohosh is an herbal preparation that is becoming more and more popular in the U.S., and the North American Menopause Society does support the short-term use of black cohosh for treating menopausal symptoms, for a period of up to six months .

    Some studies have shown that black cohosh can reduce hot flashes, but most of the studies have not been considered to be rigorous enough in their design to firmly prove any benefit. There also have not been scientific studies done to establish the long-term benefits and safety of this product. Research is ongoing to further determine the effectiveness and safety of black cohosh.

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