What Are The Stages Leading Up To Menopause
After puberty, there are three other phases of female fertility:
- Pre-menopause:;Women have full ovarian function, regularly produce estrogen and ovulate.
- Perimenopause:;The ovaries begin to fluctuate in their ovulation and production of estrogen, which can result in unpredictable menstrual cycles and symptoms.
- Menopause: When the ovaries have shut down. Someone would be in menopause after 12 months without menses.
Hot Flash Risk Factors
The exact cause of hot flashes is a bit tricky to pin down. In addition to changing hormones, thinning skin and reduced circulation are likely contributors. Your bodys hypothalamus – its thermostat – also becomes more sensitive to temperature changes as you age.
There are some factors that seem to make hot flashes worse for many women. These include:
- Smoking. Women who smoke are at increased risk of hot flashes.
- Obesity. A higher BMI is correlated with more hot flashes.
- Stress. Although the precise reason isnt clear, women who report high levels of stress are at higher risk of hot flashes.
- Ethnicity. Women of African-American descent report the highest rate of hot flashes, followed by white women of European descent. Chinese and Japanese women tend to have lower incidence of hot flashes.
- Chemotherapy and surgery. Women who have been through chemotherapy and ovarian surgery are more likely to start menopause and experience hot flashes.
When Do Hot Flashes Start
Menopause is a significant period in most women’s lives. The time leading up to menopause is commonly referred to as perimenopause, and this is when many women start to experience hot flashes. This period typically ends once 12 consecutive months have lapsed without a menstrual cycle, signifying menopause. Women usually experience perimenopause somewhere between the ages of 45 and 55 years old. During this life stage, women’s bodies generally undergo many changes. In most cases, their estrogen and progesterone levels take a nosedive, which may lead to several symptomshot flashes includedthat persist during menopause.
Yoga Tip For Hot Flushes:
You feel the flush starting. Stop. Pause. Whats your predominating sensation;in;this moment? And now? And now? And now? How about now? ;Flush over? Congratulations you have just been fully present over the course of several present moments.
The hot flush can be your friend because, if you stop seeing it as something you need to control, something you are suffering, something you want to end, and simply experience it as a sensation arising in each present moment, well hey, youve just seen reality for those few moments and thats kinda cool. Im mindful here also, of studies of menopausal symptoms in various cultures and across various;socio-economic;groups. Worldwide, it appears, poorer, busier, more rural women experience less agitating symptoms than richer, less occupied,;city-dwelling;women. Could be the diet, could be the not getting real ladies. No ones saying that night sweats are a whole pile of fun. Believe me, I know. Equally, no one can say that a huge change to a new and empowering way of life, is going to be a bed of roses.
If you’d like to hear more from Estelle I highly recommend this blog called Embrace The Change!
Which Type Of Doctor Treats Hot Flashes
Many women will consult their gynecologist for the management of hot flashes associated with approaching menopause. Hot flashes are also treated by primary care providers, including internists and family practitioners. Hot flashes related to uncommon conditions, serious infections, or cancers are treated by the specialists treating the underlying condition.
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What’s The First Sign Of Perimenopause
The first perimenopause sign is typically a disruption of your menstrual cycle. For many women, your period starts earlier or later than normal. For example, if your menstrual cycle has always been 28 days, during perimenopause, your period could come as early as 21 or as late as 35 days. Some women start skipping months entirely and then experience heavier-than-normal periods when they do have them.
Other Changes During Menopause
The loss of estrogen during menopause can cause changes in the vaginal and vulvar skin. These changes can result in vaginal dryness, burning and discomfort, or painful intercourse. Most women need a lubricant.;
There are many different formulations, but silicone-based lubricants are best. Be aware that most over-the-counter lubricants contain preservatives, which can cause irritation. A preservative-free silicone lubricant or natural product, such as extra virgin olive oil or organic unrefined;coconut oil, can also work.;
Many women also experience painful spasms of the interior pelvic muscles, called vaginismus. Specialized physical therapy is a very effective treatment. Our center has a group of female physical therapists who are specially trained in pelvic floor rehabilitation.;
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Maintain A Cool Sleeping Environment To Combat Hot Flashes
Hot flashes can lead to night sweats and swings in temperaturefrom too hot to chilly.
As many as 85% of people who go through menopause experience hot flashes, making it one of the most common symptoms. This sudden feeling of heat, especially in the upper body, is sometimes followed by heavy sweating and cold chills.
The worst part? Hot flashes and subsequent night sweats are short episodes that can leave you feeling overbaked one moment and chilly the next. Unfortunately, temperature is key for getting a good nights sleep. While its impossible to avoid a hot flash, there are ways to optimize the bedroom environment as your temperature fluctuates.
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We Canvassed Readers For Their Tried And Tested Remedies For Hot Flashes And Got The Following Feedback
- “I have tried;Hormone Power by Hippocrates, Bernadette Bohan sells it;here in Ireland, I found it ok but not great, my sister, on the other hand, finds it great.” Marie
- “Black Cohosh worked really well but can only be taken for around 6 months as it can cause problems with the liver if long-term use. ;It is not available in the Republic of Ireland;but you can get it up North.” ;Chris
- “I take Multi-Maca from Forever Living, I have been on it for 2 weeks and my flushes have dramatically reduced, my;mood is much better, no anxiety, so that is my choice for the moment.; This is available from my nutritionist.” Joanne
- “Sage is extremely good at balancing the heat within the body so it works on the flushes and sweats, I have a cup of sage tea regularly throughout the day. I also;chew on a few Goji berries.” Robyn
- “I’m in the early stages of ‘my second spring’ and found when I’m very stressed the hot flushes come hot and heavy.; A friend recommended a magnet made by Lady Care, it is said to reduce or alleviate hot flushes, palpitations, muscle tension and anxiety. It attaches to underwear and is non-invasive and I forget I’m wearing it! It definitely helps me .;I bought it in Boots it cost;about 35” Liz
- “My friend sleeps with baby wipes on her forehead.” Rosanna
- I find the best thing for the flushes is complaining. I complain loudly and no matter what’s wrong with anyone else I’m much worse. Makes me feel much better to complain!!” Eimer
My Second Spring E-book
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What Are Hot Flashes A Sign Of Triggers For Hot Flushes
Hot flushes are caused by falling oestrogen levels at menopause. You may notice that they are;being triggered by caffeine, spicy foods, alcohol;and external heat sources like a hot bath or an overheated room. If so avoid these triggers. For some women, stress and tension;cause more frequent hot flushes. And indeed stressing during a hot flush and fanning yourself/taking off layers can make it worse – have you noticed?! Women who smoke are more than twice as likely to experience severe hot flushes than women who have never smoked.
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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How To Modify Your Daily Caffeine Intake
If youâre a fast metabolizer, caffeine is simply not going to affect you as much, and in moderate amounts is likely to have minimal side effects. ;That being said â choose the healthiest, chemical free coffee or tea.;
If youâre a slow metabolizer, Iâd recommend avoiding caffeine anytime youâre having trouble with hot flashes, insomnia, anxiety, heart palpitations, low hormone levels, low bone density, or adrenal fatigue!;
If youâre a slow metabolizer of caffeine, youâre always going to want to avoid it or drink it very carefully in small amounts. ;If youâre a fast metabolizer, as long as youâre healthy and your hormones and symptoms are under excellent control, youâre likely to tolerate moderate amounts of caffeine without side effects.;
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Menopause And Excessive Sweating: When Medication Is In Order
Some women find relief with lifestyle changes, but others need more. The most important thing to remember: talk to your doctor and think about all of the possibilities for treatment, says Mary Lake Polan, MD, PhD, adjunct professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia University School of Medicine in New York City.
Finding a treatment that works for you is a highly individual thing. âI tell patients to keep trying,â Polan says. Sooner or later youâll find relief from hot flashes and night sweats.
Hormone therapy. Hormone therapy is the most effective way to treat hot flashes, but the Women’s Health Initiative study found an increased risk for heart disease, blood clots, and stroke, and an increase in breast cancer when women took oral estrogen and progestin long-term, Omicioli says. The increased heart disease risk was in older women who were 10 or more years postmenopausal, she says.
But thereâs emerging evidence that non-oral forms of estrogen — a cream, gel, patch, or ring — may have safety advantages in reducing risk of blood clots and stroke, Omicioli says.
The WHI study didnât find an increased risk of breast cancer in women who took estrogen alone, Omicioli says. The study also looked at one dose of oral estrogen and synthetic progestin. âThere may be a lower risk with progesterone vs. synthetic progestin,â she says.
The supplement black cohosh may also help some women reduce hot flashes, although the results of scientific studies have been mixed.
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What Is Menopause Its A Moment In Time
Menopause is a specific point in time. Menopause occurs when periods stop and youve gone 12 consecutive months since having your last period. Once youve hit that moment, you enter post-menopause.
Reaching menopause means that youre no longer able to bear children. Every woman except for those whove had their ovaries removed before puberty will go through menopause.
When does menopause start?
The average menopause age is around 51. But some women experience menopause in their 40s with a small percentage experiencing menopause even younger. Some women may not reach menopause until their 60s.
Theres no way to know your exact menopause age until it happens, but genetics seem to play a strong role. You may get a general idea of when to expect menopause based on when your family members went through it, particularly your mother.
Genetics arent the only thing that can impact when menopause starts. Medical factors can also influence menopause timing. When the ovaries are removed, symptoms will begin to show immediately.
Certain medical conditions like autoimmune diseases have also been associated with early menopause. Women whove undergone treatments like radiation therapy or chemotherapy are also more likely to show symptoms earlier.
Is It Normal To Have Hot Flashes In Your 30s Or 40s
When a woman has hot flashes, the first thought is the m-word: menopause. In the U.S., the average age of menopause onset is 51, but that average is surrounded by a wide swath of time that encompasses women age 30 to 70.
Genetics, illness, and medical procedures can cause symptoms of menopause much earlier than age 51. So if youre in your 30s or 40s and starting to feel hot flashes, heres what could be happening.
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What Other Menopause Symptoms Will I Get Along With Hot Flushes
As mentioned earlier, a fall in oestrogen is the main cause of hot flushes. Falling oestrogen can also cause irregular periods, fatigue, insomnia, early waking and mood swings. These are some of the most common first signs of menopause or perimenopause;- please have a read of our article on Perimenopause and 8 Useful Steps;to find out what you can do to glide smoothly through perimenopause and menopause!
Read our article Perimenopause and 8 Useful Steps
What Are Night Sweats
During the night you might;experience symptoms similar to hot flushes. You might wake up to find you are drenched and need to change your bedclothes – no fun at all! If this is happening regularly you might find it practical to sleep on a towel and just switch the towel during the night rather than removing all your sheets. Night sweats can disrupt your sleep, possibly adding to other symptoms of the menopause, such as insomnia, anxiety,;fatigue, depression and memory lapses.;
You’re;likely to have more frequent hot flushes after monthly periods have stopped altogether, and they may last for several years. They do however tend to stop once oestrogen levels stabilise.;
Some women only experience hot flushes during the day, others only experience night sweats.
My Second Spring E-book
The Best Friends Guide: Anxiety – A Practical Toolkit For Moving Beyond Anxiety at Menopause – 12
Thanks Girls another great book ! Well done My Second Spring, the advice is practical, down to earth and Im already working on my toolkit. Thank you so much
Low libido can by caused by hormonal adjustments
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What Causes Hot Flashes And Sweating During Menopause
Ellen Sarver Dolgen, Coronado, Calif.-based author of Shmirshky: The Pursuit of Hormone Happiness, found her life thrown upside down when perimenopause began in her late 40s. Her first hot flash happened while she was in a business meeting with all men.
âI felt a flush of heat come over me but I didnât want to pay much attention to it,â she told WebMD. But when she stood up she felt sweat dripping down the inseam of her pants. âThank goodness I carry a big purse because I think it makes my hips look smaller,â she says. She used her purse to hide the wet mark on her pants as she left the meeting. âIt was absolutely mortifying.â
Doctors think hot flashes and night sweats are a result of fluctuating or decreasing estrogen levels. When menstrual cycles finally stop, estrogen levels drop fairly dramatically, Omicioli says.
The drop may impact a part of the brain that regulates body temperature. We all have a thermal neutral zone, which means our body temperature stays stable even when the temperature around us changes slightly. Theoretically, a drop in estrogen levels may narrow the thermal neutral zone, so that small changes in outside temperature cause a rise in body heat.
There are a couple of other theories about why menopause and excessive sweating tend to go hand in hand.
Small Change Big Result
We like Hot Flash Tea, which is a Gamma-aminobutyric acid oolong tea, known as “GABA” tea which includes black cohosh, echinacea and yam extracts as well. GABA is a naturally occurring amino acid in our brains which naturally declines with age. Because this amino acid plays a huge role in regulating our central nervous system, the tea works by helping your body to regulate hot flash sensations.
This unique organic tea was inspired by Denise Pines, a filmmaker and competitive runner -; who desired to take back control of her body from the totally unexpected onset of hot flashes. Denise told us, Because I have always taken such good care of my body, both from a fitness standpoint and the food I eat, it never ever occurred to me that I would ever experience such a thing as a hot flash. So when it actually happened to me, I was absolutely shocked. I didnt even know what was happening. At first, I thought I was having a heart attack.
There are a broad range of supplements and tinctures available at your health food store, integrative pharmacy, local drugstore or on Amazon.com.; For those who dont feel a tea infusion solution is for them or want to supplement it even further, Remifemin is a tablet using the black cohosh herb that has consistent manufacturing. Some other plant-based solutions that can be effective include the following:
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