Answers to Your Questions About Night Sweats and Menopause
Q: What are the causes of night sweats?
A: When you are overheated, your body sweats to cool down your internal body temperature. Your body’s internal temperature is regulated by the hypothalamus gland within the brain. This gland is affected by the reduction in hormones and hormonal imbalance that begins to happen prior to menopause. This imbalance causes blood dilation which then causes the hot flashes that tend to precede night sweats. Most women begin to experience the symptom of night sweats prior to actually beginning menopause. Often this happens even before the pre-menopause (also called peri-menopause) stage.
Menopause is one of the most common reasons for experiencing night sweats and tends to be more of a woman’s health issue. However, night sweats can also be caused by many other medical conditions in both males and females. For example, hypoglycemia, cancer and infection can all cause night sweats. They can also be a side effect of certain medications. Night sweats that occur on a nightly or fairly regular basis can severely disrupt sleep cycles and affect a woman’s quality of life.
Night sweats occur most often immediately following a hot flash. There are many triggers you can avoid to reduce the possibility of hot flashes and the resulting night sweats. Although you may not rid yourself of them completely, you can certainly do plenty to reduce their frequency.
Q: Help! How can I stop these night sweats?
A: Avoid caffeine, cigarettes, alcohol and spicy foods and be sure to wear loose fitting clothing rather than anything restrictive or tight. Reduce stress, eat a well-balance diet and create a regular exercise program for yourself. Be sure your room is cool at night and try a cool shower or bath just prior to getting into bed. Natural herbs and hormones such as natural progesterone can be very effective in reducing or even eliminating your experience of night sweats.
Q:What are some unusual ways women deal with night sweats?
A: Some women find that alternative treatments such as biofeedback, acupuncture and daily meditation help reduce the severity of menopause discomfort. Daily deep breathing exercises have also been found to be very helpful in the reduction of hot flashes and night sweats. Each morning and evening, breathe slowly and deeply at a rate of six to eight in and out cycles per minute. Continue this for fifteen minutes each session. You can also use this technique if you awake to hot flashes and night sweats. Begin the deep breathing exercises as soon as you feel the symptoms and continue for fifteen minutes or until the symptoms subside, whichever comes first.
Q: Will natural hormones such as progesterone and herbs help me get rid of nights sweats?
A: Bio-identical hormones can reduce or even completely eliminate the occurrence of night sweats. Natural hormones are made from substances found in nature and are similar to the hormones already found in the human body. Natural progesterone can help you create the hormonal balance needed to end your discomfort.
Black Cohosh is extremely effective in treating menopause and has been shown to reduce hot flashes and night sweats. It has a mild estrogenic effect and will bind to the body’s hormone receptors to help eliminate many menopause concerns. EstroRenew is a proprietary blend of chasteberry, red clover, and black cohosh is also used in combination with progesterone to help address night sweats, hot flashes and other menopause issues.
©Alternative Medicine Network 2009
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