How Can You Sleep Better After The Menopause
When it comes to medication, its better to treat your menopause symptoms than to treat the sleeplessness. In other words, sleeping tablets arent the answer. HRT or other medications may help, but there are also things you can do yourself.
- Dont try to catch up by napping during the day.
- Exercise can help with your mood and can tire you just enough to help you fall asleep more easily.
- In the hours before bed, avoid looking at screens, smoking, heavy meals, alcohol and caffeine.
- Try to follow a bedtime routine, especially one that de-stresses you. A warm bath can be soothing.
- If stress and anxiety are keeping you awake, cognitive behavioural therapy may help.
If youre really struggling, I recommend you talk to your GP. Getting enough sleep is important for both your physical and mental health.
If youre struggling with menopause symptoms, or want to support someone who is, were here to help. Theres lots of information, expert advice and signposting on the menopause pages within our Womens Health Hub, and you dont need to be a Bupa customer to access any of it.
What Can I Do To Prevent Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis isnt entirely preventable, but you can take steps to strengthen your bones. Eating foods high in calcium like cheese, yogurt, spinach or fortified cereals can help boost calcium intake. Adding a calcium supplement can also help. Some people also need a vitamin D supplement because it helps their body absorb calcium.
But He Should Be Used To This Routine By Now
Ive been having hot flashes upon waking for awhile now.
When I wake up in the morning my skin is lovely and soft.
As soon as I move, Im covered in buckets of sweat.
We both hate this morning routine, but weve learned to live with it.
This is one symptom that has refused to go away and Im supposed to be post-menopausal.
Im positive Im not the only woman on the planet who suffers from hot flashes when I wake up in the morning.
Also Check: How To Help Hot Flashes Menopause
Don’t Miss: Dizzy Spells Menopause
Mirena And Other Forms Of Contraception Dont Affect The Onset Of Menopause
Mirena partially suppresses ovulation the release of an egg from its follicle to stop you from getting pregnant. Stands to reason that releasing fewer eggs will make the ones you have last longer and make you go into menopause later, right? Wrong.
Even if you dont ovulate, you steadily lose follicles as you get older. Mirena or any other type of contraceptive doesnt seem to affect the time it takes to get to menopause.
Recommended Reading: How Long Between Periods During Menopause
Treatment Options For Hot Flashes
Non-hormone options. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the use of paroxetine. This is a low-dose antidepressant that uses a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor to treat hot flashes.
Women who use an antidepressant to help manage hot flashes generally take a lower dose than people who use the medication to treat depression. Side effects depend on the type of antidepressant you take. They can include:
Read Also: Sweet Potatoes And Menopause
Why Does Menopause Affect Your Sleep
Menopause means you eventually stop producing the hormone progesterone, which has a role in helping you sleep. Besides night sweats, during menopause you are also two to three times more likely to have sleep apnoea than before. Perhaps you have restless legs at night, or very hot feet. And if youre feeling anxious or depressed, that can keep you awake, too.
When To See A Doctor
There are many different reasons for experiencing hot flashes. While most of them are not serious, you do need to know for sure what is causing them.
If youre having trouble narrowing down the cause of your hot flashes, try keeping track of the episodes. List the details about the outdoor and room temperature at the time that you have one, your diet and activity levels, and any medications that you used. After a few weeks of collecting data, your doctor might be able to help you find a pattern.
Read Also: Does Ristela Cause Weight Gain
Will My Hot Flashes Stop After Menopause
Some people still experience hot flashes after menopause. Postmenopausal hot flashes are caused by decreased estrogen levels. It is not uncommon to experience a random hot flash for years after menopause. If your hot flashes are bothersome or intensify, speak with your healthcare provider to rule out other causes.
Q: What Is A Hot Flash
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: Menopause Hair Texture
Medicine Versus The Placebo Effect
There are a number of different medicines that your doctor might prescribe to help reduce and control hot flushes. But before taking any of these, there is something important to bear in mind.
When researchers want to find out how well a treatment works in a trial, they sometimes test it against a dummy treatment, or placebo. The people taking part in the trial dont know whether they are taking the new treatment or the placebo. Many of us feel better when taking something that we think will help.
In nearly all trials looking at treatment for hot flushes, people taking the placebo said that their flushes were reduced by about a fifth . It is important to bear this in mind when we are looking at other treatments. If a treatment reduces hot flushes by 20% or less, it may not be better than a placebo.
The Symptoms Of Menopause
There is no one single symptom thats commonly seen in all women as everyone has a different menopause experience. Some women have very few symptoms, while others have issues that affect their daily lives. Symptoms are usually the most troublesome during perimenopause and can include:
- Mild warm flashes or hot flashes with profuse sweating.
- Poor sleep quality.
- Anxiety, mild mood swings, flares of depression
- Brain fogginess.
- Body changes, including weight gain and
- Fat redistribution to the abdominal area, also known as the âmenopouch, and vaginal dryness and pain with sex
- Certain changes should be monitored, including rapid loss of bone and the development of atherosclerotic plaques in vessels and coronary arteries.
You May Like: How To Lose Abdominal Fat After Menopause
Recommended Reading: Heightened Sense Of Smell Perimenopause
What Causes Hot Flashes Other Than Menopause
Cristina Mutchler is an award-winning journalist with more than a decade of experience in national media, specializing in health and wellness content. A multilingual Latina, Cristina’s work has appeared on CNN and its platforms, local news affiliates across the country, and in the promotion of medical journal articles and public health messaging.
Hot flashes are commonly associated with menopause, but they can also be caused by a variety of different lifestyle factors or medical conditions, and they are not always a sign of something serious.
A hot flash is a feeling of sudden intense heat on the upper body lasting anywhere from 30 seconds to several minutes or longer. The feeling is often joined by other symptoms like sweating, reddening of the skin, dizziness, and heart palpitations.
While there are other possible causes, hot flashes are extremely common when people are going through perimenopause/menopause.
Hot flashes happen when the bodys internal thermostat senses that its too warm. This starts a chain of events where your heart beats faster, your sweat glands spring into action, and the blood vessels that are near the skins surface widen to cool the body off.
Will I Still Enjoy Sex After Menopause
You should still be able to enjoy sex after menopause. Sometimes, decreased sex drive is related to discomfort and painful intercourse. After treating the source of this pain , many women are able to enjoy intimacy again. Hormone therapy can also help many women. If you are having difficulties enjoying sex after menopause, talk to your healthcare provider.
Don’t Miss: Are Sweet Potatoes Good For Menopause
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.
What Is A Hot Flash
Intense warmth. A hot flash is a sudden feeling of warmth around your body. It is typically most intense on your chest, face, and neck. Many people find that their skin becomes pink or red, almost like they’re blushing.
Because of the intense warmth, your hot flash may also cause you to sweat. If you sweat a lot, this could cause you to lose too much body heat. You might experience chills after the hot flash is over.
Other medical conditions can cause hot flashes but they are most commonly due to menopause. You may continue to experience them even after menopause has ended.
Also Check: How To Increase Breast Size After Menopause
Buyer Beware: Unproven Nonscientific Treatments For Hot Flashes
You may have heard about black cohosh, DHEA, or soy isoflavones from friends who are using them to try to treat their hot flashes. These products are not proven to be effective, and some carry risks like liver damage.
Phytoestrogens are estrogen-like substances found in some cereals, vegetables, and legumes , and herbs. They might work in the body like a weak form of estrogen, but they have not been consistently shown to be effective in research studies, and their long-term safety is unclear.
At this time, it is unknown whether herbs or other “natural” products are helpful or safe. The benefits and risks are still being studied. Always talk with your doctor before taking any herb or supplement to treat your hot flashes or other menopausal symptoms.
Can Menopause Affect Sleep
Some women may experience trouble sleeping through the night and insomnia during menopause. Insomnia is an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep at night. This can be a normal side effect of menopause itself, or it could be due to another symptom of menopause. Hot flashes are a common culprit of sleepless nights during menopause.
If hot flashes keep you awake at night, try:
- Staying cool at night by wearing loose clothing.
- Keeping your bedroom well-ventilated.
Avoiding certain foods and behaviors that trigger your hot flashes. If spicy food typically sets off a hot flash, avoid eating anything spicy before bed.
Also Check: Is Dizziness A Symptom Of Menopause
Are You Sleeping Easy Or Counting Sheep
We all need sleep. The optimum amount for a healthy adult is deemed to be around seven hours. Insufficient sleep has been shown to have later detrimental effects on things like our mental health, heart health, cognitive functions and even risk of osteoporosis. Further, too much sleep, , can be associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease though cause and effect are unclear prolonged sleep may be a marker for underlying disease.
The best kind of sleep is non-REM , which consists of three separate stages, which follow in order, upwards and downwards as your sleep cycle progresses. Stage 3 is said to be the best kind. This is a deep sleep where we are essentially cut off from the outside world and unaware of any sounds or other stimuli. This usually occurs during the first half of the night and is where our brain activity, breathing, heart rate and blood pressure are all at their lowest levels. Its the time when we are most likely to dream too.
Your sleep can influence and be influenced by your health and other health conditions as you move through menopause.
What Causes Hot Flushes In A 70 Year Old
Hot flushes usually affect women who are approaching the menopause and are thought to be caused by changes in your hormone levels affecting your bodys temperature control. They can happen without warning throughout the day and night, but can also be triggered by: eating spicy foods. caffeine and alcohol.
Also Check: Is Dizziness A Symptom Of Menopause
Tips For Improving Sleep Long Term
- Go to bed and get up at a regular time. Routine is very important for establishing a good sleep pattern. Establishing and sticking to set times may take a few weeks so bear that in mind
- Ideally avoid having a nap in the day. If you do, make it no more than 30-40 minutes in the early afternoon
- Exercise regularly but dont overdo it within two hours of going to bed
- Get to know what sleep you need. The average is 6-8 hours but this does vary for individuals and reduces as you age
- Other factors can of course interfere with sleep including physical symptoms, other than those associated with the menopause. If you are taking medication for other reasons ensure you take them at the time of day they are prescribed for.
Before going to bed:
- Get yourself into a routine, perhaps have a warm bath or do some light reading
- Avoid going to bed when youre too hungry or too full. A light snack is OK
- Have your last caffeine drink in the late afternoon/evening, including any fizzy drinksor chocolate
- Alcohol does not help you to sleep so best avoided if you can.
- Ensure your bedroom has a restful feel. Ideally the room should be cool but not coldand screen out as much noise and light as is practical for you
- Get comfy! Good bedding and a good mattress are essentials
- Use your bedroom just for sleep and sex!
- Avoid watching TV in bed or using your laptop and/or phone.
If you wake up in the night:
Should I Take Hormones For My Hot Flashes
Talk with your doctor before using hormones to treat menopause symptoms. Hormones should be used at the lowest dose and for the shortest period of time they are effective.
Hormones can be very effective at reducing the number and severity of hot flashes. They are also effective in reducing vaginal dryness and bone loss.
Hormone treatments can take the form of pills, patches, rings, implants, gels, or creams. Patches, which stick to the skin, may be best for women with cardiac risk factors, such as a family history of heart disease.
There are many types of hormones available for women to treat hot flashes. These include estradiol, conjugated estrogen, selective estrogen receptor modulators , and compounded or synthetic hormones. It is a common misconception that synthetic hormones mixed by a compounding pharmacist are safer and less risky than other hormone therapies. This is not the case. We must assume they have the same risks as any hormone therapy.
Some of the relatively mild side effects of hormone use include breast tenderness, spotting or return of monthly periods, cramping, or bloating. By changing the type or amount of the hormones, the way they are taken, or the timing of the doses, your doctor may be able to help control these side effects or, over time, they may go away on their own.
Read Also: Can A Woman Lactate After Menopause
Vaginal Dryness And Trouble Sleeping
In reality, menopause is normal, natural and inevitable. Perimenopause begins between ages 35 and 57, and menopause occurs around the age of 52 for most Canadian women .
Menopausal women cannot become pregnant and, beyond that, many are pleased to be free of unpredictable and sometimes flooding blood flow that one-third of women experience in perimenopause.
The night sweats and hot flashes that begin in perimenopause may last as long as 10 to 12 years. In general, menopausal women experience daytime sweating, which is less disruptive.
Menopausal women who dont have sex regularly will likely notice some vaginal dryness, some may have more trouble sleeping soundly and, for a few, a sudden urgency to pee may make it a race to get to the washroom on time.
How Long Do Hot Flashes Last
The intensity and frequency of hot flashes vary. Some people experience them multiple times a day, and others will only have the occasional hot flash. Hot flash episodes usually last anywhere from one to five minutes at a time.
On average, hot flash symptoms last for seven or more years before and after menopause, though some people may have them for 10 years or longer.
The time at which you first start having hot flashes may indicate how long youll get them. For example, research has found that people who had hot flashes before menopause experienced them for nearly 12 years, compared to people who had their first hot flash after menopause, who experienced them for three years, on average.
You May Like: Early Menopause After Tubal Ligation