Hot Flashes: 10 Ways To Keep Your Cool
Feeling hot and bothered? You're not alone. As many as 75% of women experience hot flashes during menopause. Nonmenopausal hormonal conditions can also cause that sudden hot, sweaty feeling.
Fortunately, there are many nonprescription steps you can take to keep your cool when you experience a hot flash.
1. Move the air.
A remote-controlled, oscillating tower fan is a godsend when you awaken with a hot flash. These can be purchased for less than $100, making it possible to keep one at home and at the office. Additionally, open windows can allow air to flow through your home or work place. Although you may feel a little dorky, a personal fan worn around your neck might help you stay comfortable when running errands or attending sports events.
2. Try buckwheat.
A buckwheat pillow is filled with buckwheat hulls that allow air to circulate more freely. Be sure to give yourself some time to get used to your new pillow, however. Some report that the crunching, firmness, and general different feel of a buckwheat pillow takes some adjustment.
3. Chill out.
Add a cool pack to your pillow before bed. A company named Chillow also makes fluid-filled cool packs that you can place behind your back as you work or insert into your pillowcase. They also have their own memory foam pillow that comes with the Chillow.
4. Misting bottle.
Keep a small misting bottle closeby for a quick cool-off. For an extra-special treat, keep one in the fridge as well.
5. Wear a nightgown.
Since it's easier to change your clothes than change the sheets, sleep in a gown that you can slip off if you awaken with a hot flash. Having a couple of nightgowns will allow you to change into a comfortable new one.
6. Avoid stimulants.
Hot flashes can be triggered by caffeine and hot and spicy foods.
7. Drink your fluids.
Drinking plenty of noncaffeinated fluids have numerous health benefits, one being they can help reduce hot flashes.
8. Try the baby powder trick.
Even the softest bed linens feel softer and cooler when sprinkled with baby powder. Pure cornstarch baby powder is also absorbative.
9. Choose fabrics wisely.
Dress in layers that can be removed when your temperature rises. Moisture wicking fabrics, such as Coolmax, are specially designed to help move moisture away from the skin where it will evaporate more quickly.
10. Try Isoflavones.
Isoflavones, such as soy and red clover, can have estrogen-like effects that some women report help with hot flashes. It's important to talk with your doctor before taking isoflavones, particularly if you have a history of breast cancer.
These are many things you can do to reduce the severity of hot flashes and possibly eliminate them altogether. If you continue to experience severe hot flashes that you find disruptive to your life, check with your doctor to explore the possibility of hormone replacement therapy, other medications, and additional lifestyle modifications.