A hot flash, also known as a hot flush, is a rapid feeling of great heat that spreads throughout the body and is usually accompanied by sweat and heated or coloured skin. Hot flashes are more common in women after menopause, but they can also occur in men, as well as in persons with certain medical conditions or who are taking drugs that affect hormone levels.
Hot flashes can range from a few seconds to several minutes and are frequently accompanied by other symptoms such as a racing heart, chills, anxiety, and discomfort. They are caused by hormonal changes, namely a decrease in oestrogen levels, which disrupt the body’s temperature management. In terms of frequency and intensity, hot flashes can range from mild to severe.
We’ve all felt it at some point, most commonly after eating something spicy or feeling worried. A hot flash might occur unexpectedly, making you restless and uncomfortable. A strong feeling of warmth rising from your chest and expanding across your face and neck, usually accompanied by sweat, may make you question what’s wrong with you. Hot flashes, especially at night, might interfere with sleep. Some people may experience it even if they are in an air-conditioned area.
Hot Flashes Signs And Symptoms
Hot flashes symptoms differ from person to person. They can occur at any time of day but are known as “night sweats” when they occur while sleeping.
- An unexpected sensation of warmth or heat in the upper torso and face
- The face and neck are flushed, with red, blotchy skin.
- Arm, chest, and back red blotches
- Sweating or perspiration in excess, primarily on the upper body
- High heart rate
- Cold shivers after hot flushes
What Triggers Hot Flashes?
Alcohol produces vasodilation or blood vessel expansion. When vasodilation happens, a burst of blood flows through your body, boosting your body temperature naturally. This is why some people’s cheeks get red when they drink. Alcohol is also known to impair sleep quality, which can aggravate exhaustion and ruin your mood. This added strain on your body just raises the likelihood of more hot flashes, so now is a good time to reconsider your alcohol use.
Although spicy foods are delightful, they can also lead to heat flashes. Why? Vasodilators include chilli peppers, jalapenos, and other hot peppers. They enhance body warmth by speeding up blood flow through the cardiovascular system. Spicy meals also raise hormone levels, such as adrenaline. When you consume something with spice, such as a herb or a pepper, your brain records the heat that your tongue feels as though it is on fire. This leads your brain to alert the rest of your body to produce adrenaline and reduce pain in the only manner the body knows how.
Of course, the variables that produce a hot flash, such as hot, humid weather, are not always readily managed. If you feel more hot flashes on hot summer days, try to keep your skin as cold as possible. When it’s hot outside, using fans, ice packs, and drinking cool beverages might help put the severity of hot flashes at bay, even if just for a short time. The key to staying cool is Hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate some more.
Warm or tight clothing, like warm weather, can cause hot flashes by causing friction against the skin, which irritates the skin’s surface and creates heat. When enough heat accumulates at the skin’s surface, the hypothalamus suspects overheating and responds with a hot flash. Lower the amount of heat created and insulated by your garments to lower your chances of having hot flashes during the day, as well as night sweats and sleeplessness. When it’s hot outside, wear loose-fitting garments made of thinner, breathable materials. It’s also a good idea to dress in layers so you may remove them when you feel overheated!
The most common and difficult-to-manage cause of hot flashes is stress. Your body produces stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline in response to causes such as mood swings and sleeplessness. When these hormone levels are high, they increase the heart rate and blood pressure, both of which can induce a hot flash. One of your finest techniques for decreasing hot flashes is effective stress management. Even taking a deep breath to moderate a blood rush or changing your lifestyle to reduce worry can make a significant impact on your side effects.
Women who smoke are more prone to get hot flashes, especially during menopause. This is due to the fact that smoking alters the body’s hormone levels, notably oestrogen, which causes hot flashes. Furthermore, smoking can constrict blood vessels, causing a quick rise in body temperature and a hot flash.
Tips To Avoid Hot Flashes During The Day And At Night
Special precautions should be made at night to keep the bedroom cool.
- Bed linen and nightwear should be made of cotton or another organic material.
- The last meal should be light and eaten at least two hours before going to bed.
- Deep breathing, meditation, yoga, exercise, dance, and swimming are also beneficial lifestyle choices. It is critical to keep the mind busy with constructive activities.
- Live thoughtfully and remember that a third of a woman’s life is spent in the post-menopausal stage, which may be just as busy and rewarding as the rest.