How to Cope with Hot Flashes

Thursday April 28, 2016

Hot flashes

The worst part of menopause is probably the hot flashes. For some women the hot flashes can be so uncomfortable that they can’t even get a decent night’s sleep.

There are a few ways to make hot flashes more tolerable without prescriptions, hormone therapy or a trip to the doctor’s office.

Let’s start with potential triggers. It’s good to know what may be triggering the hot flashes and working against you.

Things to avoid during menopause include alcohol, caffeine, spicy foods, hot temperatures, tight clothing, stress and anxiety, and smoking. [1]

Make your day easier by wearing layers of light, soft and comfortable clothes. That way when a hot flash hits you, you can remove the layers and throw them back on when it passes and you’re cool again. Avoid those tight clothes that may be triggering hot flashes and wear something light.

Keep yourself hydrated throughout the day and sip cool, iced water, especially at the beginning of a hot flash.

In the mornings, before bed in the evenings and when you start the feel the beginnings of a hot flash try slow abdominal breathing.[2]  Breathe five to seven times per minute, way slower than you normally would.[3]

Help de-stress by exercising regularly (just don’t over exert yourself) and participating in calming activities such as yoga or getting a massage. (You can totally justify a spa day with this.)

To help you sleep at night keep a book and a glass of iced water on your nightstand to help you get through your hot flash and get back to sleep in the middle of the night. Keep an ice pack under your pillow so that when you turn your pillow over it’s nice and cool on your face. Wear breathable and light clothes to bed.

Keep the overall temperature in your home cool. Open windows and/or use fans to keep your environment cool and stress free.

Healthy eating and exercise will help hot flashes in the long run so maintain an overall healthy lifestyle, keep calm and grab a glass of cold water!