A hot flash, also referred to as a hot flush, is a sudden unexpected sense of heat and frequently a breakout of perspiration in the top half of their body. A night perspiration is a”hot flash” that happens in the night, frequently while one is sleeping. These flashes are experienced by 80% of women around the time of menopause, and men may also have them because of a lessening of testosterone in middle age.
At night time as a woman sleep, her body temperature climbs steeply just before a flash, and might cause her to wake up. The National Sleep Foundation writes that as many as 61 percent of post-menopausal girls report having symptoms of sleeplessness and less satisfying sleep, due in part to hot flashes interrupting their sleep with frequent awakenings.
There’s an area of the brain which controls the amounts of progesterone and estrogen produced by the ovaries. When these two hormones become depleted as in menopause, the brain sends out signals for the ovaries to make more hormones, but they no longer respond to these prompts. The signaling system can go awry as the mind sends more and more signs and really starts to “shout”. This over-activity starts to affect adjacent regions of the brain; especially the area that controls body temperature and sweating mechanics — thus the incidence of hot flashes.
Sometimes spicy food, hot drinks, caffeine, alcohol or cigarettes can cause a flash. For help with night sweats in bed, keep the bedroom cool and maintain a washcloth in a bowl of ice near the bed to work with on the forehead or chest as necessary. To minimize hot flashes during the summer weather, stay cool by using fans and drinking cold beverages. Keep air conditioners on and be certain air is circulating throughout the room. Dress in layers so that you can peel them off as needed. Vitamins C and E have been shown in studies to help reduce hot flashes. One study supporting vitamin E has been printed in “Gynecologic and Obstetric Investigation” and concluded that vitamin E is successful and is a recommended therapy.
Extensive research suggests that vitamin C strengthens blood vessels and acts as a powerful health enhancement. In a study that combined vitamin C with bioflavonoids (the white thing on the interior of orange peels), 67% of the subjects reported complete relief.
The minerals magnesium and calcium may also help with deeper, sounder sleep, especially since estrogen in women and testosterone in men helps to maintain these minerals in circulation within the body. When these hormones are depleted, more regular mineral supplementation is required.