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What Causes Hot Flashes Other Than Menopause

What Exactly Is A Hot Flash

What medical conditions other than menopause can cause hot flashes?

Characteristically, a hot flash is a sudden feeling of warmth and often a breakout of sweating usually confined to the upper half of the body , neck, face and head.

There is an intense feeling of heat and the face head and neck can turn red. When they occur at night, they are called “night sweats.” It can be difficult to distinguish them from a low grade fever such as that seen with the flu, a cold, a urinary tract infection or a more serious cause of fever such as tuberculosis or cancer.

Fevers usually cause the sweating to last longer than the typical few seconds or few minutes that hot flashes last. Non fever caused hot flashes can occur rarely or every few minutes.

If you are uncomfortable and your sleep is disturbed by night sweats, watch this video to learn about some natural remedies that work.

Why Do Hot Flashes Get Worse At Night How To Stop Them

There comes a period in every womans life where their biological clock reaches the time where menopause begins. When it comes to the sexual fertility of a woman, menstruation is the milestone that marks the physiological readiness to bear children. And at the opposite end of the time spectrum, menopause is the phase of life that signals the end of fertility for women. Menopause is the point in a womans life where she stops having her period and naturally occurs between the ages of 45-50 years old. However, there is no rhyme or reason as to which symptoms are experienced or the duration of the menopausal phases from woman to woman. One of the most notable symptoms of menopause and the time period leading up to menopause is hot flashes. Below, we will explain in more detail the phases of menopause, the symptoms and how to deal with them, specifically hot flashes.

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How Are Night Sweats Treated

Treatment depends on the cause of the night sweats. For menopause-related night sweats, hormone therapy estrogen alone or with progestin is one option. Hormone therapy can also help with other symptoms of menopause including bone loss and vaginal dryness. Estrogen replacement therapy should not be used in women with a history of breast cancer. All hormone therapies carry some risks, including blood clots and gallbladder inflammation.

Non-estrogen medications used to treat hot flashes include:

  • Megestrol
  • Antidepressants
  • Anticonvulsants
  • Clonidine

Non-drug treatments for night sweats from any cause include:

  • Wearing loose-fitting, lightweight, cotton pajamas
  • Using layered bedding that can be removed as needed during the night
  • Turning on a bedroom fan/opening windows
  • Sipping cool water throughout the night
  • Keeping a cold pack under a pillow, then turning your pillow over to rest your head on a cool surface
  • Avoiding common night sweat triggers such as alcohol, spicy foods, caffeine, cigarettes
  • De-stressing through deep breathing, relaxation, and exercise
  • Undergoing hypnosis to help relax and focus on feeling cool
  • Exercising daily. Walking, swimming, dancing, and bicycling are all good choices.

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Carcinoid Syndrome And Hormone

Though its more rare, hot flashes can also be caused by carcinoid syndrome, a condition in people with advanced carcinoid tumors that produce excess hormones that have effects throughout the body.

A common symptom of carcinoid syndrome is facial flushing. When this happens, the skin on your face, your neck, or your upper chest will suddenly feel hot and get red.

Facial flushing in people with carcinoid syndrome happens after the release of certain chemicals in the body that causes the widening of blood vessels and a surge in blood flow under the skin.

Other tumors, such as pancreatic tumors, medullary thyroid cancer, bronchogenic carcinoma , and renal cell carcinoma, can also lead to hot flashes.

Hot Flashes In The Absence Menopause: Other Explanations

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

Frederick R. Jelovsek MD

“I am a 32 year old female. Throughout the last year, I’ve developed “night sweats”. I have them sporadically about once a month. I know this is a common occurrence with menopause, but I’m only 32! I also know that I could be starting menopause early. However, are there other conditions that would cause night sweats? Is there a way to prevent them? Thanks a bunch. “. J.S.

The quick answer to this is that at a frequency of once a month, night sweats are not very likely due to a disease process or menopause or even perimenopause. Also at that frequency, I would not suggest going to extreme means to try to stop them other than some of the simple suggestions below.

Get The Cure For Hot Flashes

In the mind of many women, hot flashes are only associated with low estrogens but that is not true. It may surprise you that men have hot flashes too. They can get them if undergoing treatment for prostrate cancer using anti-testosterone therapy, using thermal blankets and from alcohol, hot liquids and other substances.

Both estrogen and testosterone seem to protect against frequent hot flashes. If either of those hormones are withdrawn after one’s body is used to them, a rapid increase in skin temperature due to dilatation of the skin blood vessels can occur very frequently.

While these hormones protect from frequent hot flashes, many other events and ingested substances can also cause the skin vessels to rapidly dilate and release heat.

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Can Hot Flashes Be Something Else

Other Causes for Hot Flashes

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.

How To Stop Hot Flushes

  • See your doctor to make sure there is no underlying medical condition causing your hot flushes, particularly if you’re also suffering from symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, weight loss or diarrhoea
  • Check the listed side effects of all of your current medication. If hot flushes are listed as a side effect then discuss your prescription with your doctor. There may be a suitable alternative, or changing timing or dosage might help
  • Keep a food diary. This will help you identify whether certain foods or ingredients are triggers
  • Track when you have a hot flush. Write down where you were and what you were doing. This might reveal patterns or environmental factors that are causing them
  • Make time for yourself. Scientists have identified a link between hot flushes and stress
  • Exercise regularly
  • Reduce your alcohol intake and if you are a smoker, quit
  • Limiting spicy foods and caffeine
  • Reducing the temperature of baths and showers
  • Wearing light layers

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Beverley Coped With Hot Flushes By Using A Fan Wearing Short Sleeved T

The sweats got really bad. And it was funny because you could feel it from the tip of your toe and you could feel it rising and then Id glow and Id be fanning myself for dear life. I was a typical Caribbean person in terms of I always felt the cold. However, once I was into my menopause I was never cold, in fact I was always hot and this went on for quite a few years. I adjusted the type of clothes I wore and didnt layer as much. I could literally wear a short sleeved t-shirt or a jumper or blouse with a cardigan on top in the summer, in the winter, sorry, and Id be fine. Obviously, my jacket if I was outside. Because I didnt really feel the cold as much as I had done before. So its basically changing your lifestyle but you do it and then it becomes part of your normal day to day. And as I said Id walk around with a fan. I also had a fan in my office that was on my desk so I could put it on and if I didnt, if I was sitting somewhere where there wasnt a fan then Id try and sit somewhere where I had access to a window. So I could open it.And as I said, Im 50 now. The sweats have calmed down but every now and then I do get them but not as much and Im starting to feel the cold again so Im wondering if Ive come to the end of that cycle and my body is now coming back to something like what it was premenopausal.

Q: How Long Will I Get Hot Flashes

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

A: On average, you may be looking at 10-15 years of living with hot flashes. Though they are sporadic, their unpredictability is very frustrating. Lets look at what you can expect:

  • 40s: This is when most women start perimenopause. Some hot flashes and night sweats begin.
  • 46-53: In the U.S., this is the average age for menopause, which is defined as 12 straight months with no period. Hot flashes tend to be most frequent in the two years after menopause.
  • Late 50s: Most women continue to have hot flashes anywhere from 4-10 years after menopause. But most of these will decrease in frequency and severity.

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What Treatments Are Available

As is the case with most menopausal issues, many treatments involve Hormone Replacement Therapy . In cases where hormone treatments are not ideal in a particular case, there are non-hormonal medications, and alternative ways to potentially treat menopause-related sleep problems.

  • Hormone Replacement Therapy: There are several types of hormone therapies available to women. They include bioidentical hormones, synthetic hormones and combinations of the aforementioned. Bioidentical hormones are biologically identical to the hormones women produce in their ovaries: estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Hormone replacement therapy can alleviate symptoms by providing the body with adequate hormones for the body to function well.
  • Nonhormonal Medication: A doctor may also recommend non-hormonal medications to treat symptoms in lieu of hormone replacement therapy.
  • Antidepressants can not only treat depression and mental health issues caused by menopause, but also vasomotor symptoms like hot flashes.
  • Brisdelle is medication containing a very low dose of paroxetine, which is branded as Paxil, and is approved only for the treatment of night sweats and hot flashes. The dose is too low to effectively treat depression.
  • Gabapentin can decrease the frequency and intensity of hot flashes and night sweats.
  • Clonidine is a hypertension medication that may help with vasomotor symptoms but usually not as effectively as the medications mentioned above.

The Effect Of A Sedentary Lifestyle

Hot flashes are a source of discomfort, but research has also shown that hot flashes and night sweats are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Thats yet another reason why its so important to find ways to alleviate hot flashes for people during menopause.

For the new study, which was presented at the North American Menopause Society Annual Meeting in September, researchers wanted to investigate whether lifestyle factors, including activity levels, had an effect on the incidence of hot flashes throughout the menopausal transition.

To find out, the researchers evaluated 13 premenopausal, 29 perimenopausal, and 24 postmenopausal women who were 45 to 55 years old. The researchers asked the women about their experiences with hot flashes and measured their daily physical activity levels.

The study found a link between the amount of time that the women were sedentary and the frequency of their hot flashes. Specifically, participating in approximately 3.3 additional hours of sedentary behavior increased the occurrence of hot flashes by 1 nighttime hot flash in a 24-hour cycle.

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Why Does My Body Feel Hot But No Fever

People may feel hot without a fever for many reasons. Some causes may be temporary and easy to identify, such as eating spicy foods, a humid environment, or stress and anxiety. However, some people may feel hot frequently for no apparent reason, which could be a symptom of an underlying condition.

Hot Flashes During Menopause

What Causes Night Sweats Other Than Menopause

Imagine feeling comfortable one moment, then experiencing a wave of heat overcoming your body the next. When a person has a hot flash, they may feel extremely warm and get sweaty. Their face can also turn red and become flushed.

When hot flashes occur at night, they can disrupt sleep, which in turn has a negative effect on daytime functioning, mental health, and quality of life.

A relationship between symptoms of depression and subjective sleep disturbances has also been documented in people going through the menopausal transition.

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On A Bad Night Christina Wakes Up Drenched And Has To Get Up And Wash Before Trying To Get Back

The night sweats are terrible. It doesnt matter whether I go to bed with nothing on and I sleep on my own, and I will still wake up absolutely drenched. And I can have a sheet over me and that will be wringing wet in the morning as well so its like having to go to sleep with towels. And I dont have a plastic cover on my mattress because that tends to aggravate the situation so its just me having towels underneath me so you wake up with marks all over your back and everything else. But, even just going with no sheet you still have the sweats.So this is even in winter you are sleeping with a sheet.Yeah. Windows open and everything else so just trying to calm that down.And how many times would you be woken up at night?On a bad night at least three or four times and then having to go and get washed and try and dry off and everything else and change everything and then try and get back to sleep again.So you actually change your clothing and your bedding do you?Yeah, if Im wearing like a cotton nightie. That all has to come off. The towels that are on top of the sheets have to come off and be changed again. And then I go to the other side of the bed and try and make sure that youre sleeping on a dry patch. I mean Im quite lucky because I am on my own and I dont have to disturb anybody.

Hormone Therapy For Hot Flashes

Traditionally, hot flashes have been treated with either oral or transdermal forms of estrogen. Hormone therapy or postmenopausal hormone therapy , formerly referred to as hormone replacement therapy , consists of estrogens alone or a combination of estrogens and progesterone . All available prescription estrogen medications, whether oral or transdermal, are effective in reducing the frequency of hot flashes and their severity. Research indicates that these medications decrease the frequency of hot flashes.

However, long-term studies of women receiving combined hormone therapy with both estrogen and progesterone were halted when it was discovered that these women had an increased risk for heart attack, stroke, and breast cancer when compared with women who did not receive hormone therapy. Later studies of women taking estrogen therapy alone showed that estrogen was associated with an increased risk for stroke, but not for heart attack or breast cancer. Estrogen therapy alone, however, is associated with an increased risk of developing endometrial cancer in postmenopausal women who have not had their uterus surgically removed.

More recently, it has been noted that the negative effects associated with hormone therapy were described in older women who were years beyond menopause, and some researchers have suggested that these negative outcomes might be lessened or prevented if hormone therapy was given to younger women instead of women years beyond menopause.

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An Introduction To Other Causes Of Hot Flushes And Menopause

We generally assume that a hot flush has been caused by the menopause, but this is not always the case. If you believe that your hot flushes may be caused by something other than the menopause, it is worth examining your symptoms, as neglecting to investigate the root cause may prevent you from finding an effective solution.

Stress And Emotional Causes

What Causes Hot Flashes In Menopause?

In reaction to emotional stimuli, your body may release the stress hormones epinephrine and norepinephrine, which pump up blood flow and produce a warming sensation throughout the body. Similar to blushing, flushing can result from a wide variety of factorsfrom stress to spinal cord lesions and migraine headachescausing entire sections of your body to turn red and feel extremely warm. Sometimes, flushing is simply an allergic skin reaction to outside stimuli like food or environmental elements.

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Dealing With Hot Flashes

Hot flashes can be a nuisance, but there are several lifestyle changes that may be helpful in dealing with or preventing them.

  • Keep the house cool and avoid overly warm environments.
  • Dress in light, loose, layered clothing.
  • Stay hydrated by sipping cold water.
  • Carry a portable fan.
  • Avoid alcohol, spicy foods, and caffeine in excess.
  • If you smoke, make a plan to quit.

Why Do I Keep Feeling Hot

Overactive thyroid

Having an overactive thyroid gland, also known as hyperthyroidism, can make people feel constantly hot. Hyperthyroidism happens when the thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone. The condition can affect how the body regulates temperature. People may also be sweating more than usual.

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Causes Of Hot Flushes

Hot flushes usually affect women who are approaching the menopause and are thought to be caused by changes in your hormone levels affecting your body’s temperature control.

They can happen without warning throughout the day and night, but can also be triggered by:

  • eating spicy foods
  • some health conditions, such as an overactive thyroid, diabetes and tuberculosis

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