A woman holds her face in her hands to deal with the pain.

Hot Flashes Treatments

A hot flash is a sudden, intense surge of body heat, often accompanied with sweating and reddening of the skin. It is also known as a hot flush or night sweat. Palpitations, irritability and anxiety may accompany this unexpected occurrence. In rare instances, panic may also be another symptom.This uncomfortable side effect of aging affects up to eighty-five percent of menopausal and perimenopausal women. A hot flash typically can last a few seconds to thirty minutes, and can occur at any time. It may occur more frequently at night, during which time the estrogen level is usually lower than normal. These are called night sweats. After a year or two, the incidents of hot flushes and night sweats recede in frequency. Twenty to fifty percent of women continue suffering with periodic episodes for a number of years.

Who Gets Hot Flashes

While it is generally associated with midlife menopause, any condition that significantly reduces or depletes the estrogen hormone level can trigger an event. Women who have had surgery to remove their ovaries or have become menopausal from chemotherapy or have had antiestrogen treatment for breast cancer are also candidates for Hot flashes treatment . Thyroid problems and psychological stress can cause these symptoms in a small number of cases. Men who have undergone hormone therapy for prostrate cancer have also reported hot flashes. In these types of occurrence, Hot flashes treatment would probably not be indicated Women who smoke are more likely to develop these symptoms. Obesity and physical inactivity can contribute to women developing more severe occurrences. Ethnicity can play a part in the occurrence of this symptom. Women of Japanese and Chinese descent report fewer than women of European descent. African-American women report the highest percentage of menopausal hot flashes among these groups.Hot flashes can also be a result of some medications or they can occur with severe infections or cancers. Proper diagnosis is important if there is any doubt as to the underlying cause of the symptom. Hot flashes treatment is selected on the basis of a number of factors and altered as symptoms increase or decrease. These symptoms can be quite severe in some patients and mild in others, and patients seek to find relief through many different methods.

Hot Flashes Treatment

Hot flashes treatment is as varied as the women experiencing them. Women may experience varying degrees of intensity in their symptoms. Treatment may change over the course of the perimenopause and menopause period of their life. Women experiencing severe hot flashes and night sweats may opt for hormone replacement therapy. This treatment is prescribed by a doctor, and has a number of side effects and risks that must be weighed before proceeding with this type of treatment. Side effects can include increased risk of breast cancer, heart disease, heart attack, blood clots, dementia and stroke. The shortest course of treatment at the lowest possible dosage is generally advised. Treatment using isoflavones have not shown consistent results, but anecdotal evidence demonstrates that there may be some correlation between their use and relief for hot flashes. Isoflavones are found in legumes such as red clover and soy. A number of other herbal remedies have been used with some success. They include ginseng, black cohosh and chamomile. Some women experience few hot flashes. These fortunate women may not need to use any additional remedies at all. Lifestyle changes can be enough to alleviate most of the uncomfortable symptoms. Avoiding stress, caffeine, spicy foods, alcohol, heat, tight clothing and cigarette smoke can make a significant difference in some women's symptoms. This can act as a Hot flashes treatment in itself. Understanding one's own body and how it reacts, research and willingness to try multiple courses of action will benefit anyone in finding a hot flashes treatment.

Last Updated: December 12, 2016