top of page

What's with the hot flashes?

...and do they ever go away?

The one symptom that clues most women in to the fact they are approaching menopause is a sudden unexplainable rise in body temperature regardless of ambient temperature or time of the year.

You know the one....

You're sitting in a meeting, trying to stay awake and focused, when out of nowhere you immediately feel like you've been transported to a sauna.

You look around.

Everyone else seems fine.

But you?

Nope. Not fine. Not fine at all!

You're wide awake now and stripping as much of your clothing off as is appropriate for the situation and begin fanning yourself frantically with whatever you have in your hands.

Then, as soon as you think you may be running a fever and begin to wonder if you've now exposed everyone else to your illness and whether or not you should leave the meeting, the sudden rise in temperature is gone and you are now beginning to shiver from all the sweat on your body.

The first time this happened to me I thought I was severely ill because I had never experienced anything like this in my life!

I was 42 years old and had a hysterectomy two years prior.

No one told me I was going to experience sudden fluctuations in temperature, I was only told I would not be able to get pregnant again and I would also not be getting my monthly period again.

Which was a blessing because my fibroids had been causing me to bleed 24/7 and there were days I literally lived in the bathroom

Back to the hot flashes...

They are dreadful.

They do eventually stop.

Then they come back.

Then they stop again.

As I said, they are dreadful.

Looking back, knowing what I know now, they're not so bad. There are worse things, but if you're in the middle of one, It's the most horrible feeling in the world to you.

You literally cannot think.

So, why do we experience hot flashes? There's a really simple answer: hormones.

Yep, hormones. As we age and begin the descent into midlife years around age 40, our body begins to change up the levels of hormones as most women are on the tail end of conceiving. Now, not everyone magically enters menopause land around age 40, some enter sooner and some later, but 40 is around the time you begin to experience fluctuations if you know what to look for. This is called the peri-menopause phase.

Back to hot flashes...

As your internal clock begins to tick faster the older you get, your hormones progesterone, estrogen and testosterone begins to

go down. This shifting creates havoc in your body as your hormones regulate body temperature.

According to an article published by PubMed, estrogen promotes vasodilation (the widening of the arteries), heat dissipation, and lower body temperature, while progesterone has the opposite effect.

In a nutshell, estrogen lowers your body temperature an

d progesterone raises it.

See? We're not imagining things!

This is why it's so critical to go to a doctor as soon as you begin to experience hot flashes so you can see where your hormones are at and discuss options. Not many MD's will have much to offer besides hormone replacement therapy. This is why I prefer going to a naturopath and doing as many natural things before using synthetic pharmaceuticals.

One herb that has helped me tremendously is Black Cohosh. I've performed experiments on myself to make sure I'm not experiencing the placebo effect and imagining things, and this herb works wonders! When I began taking it, within days my hot flashes dissipated. Within a couple of weeks, they were gone altogether. I tried to stop taking it several times and each time the hot flashes came back. So I will be on this for the near future! Every 6 months or so I repeat this process to see if I'm over this menopause hump.

Here's what the Black Cohosh plant looks like, perhaps it grows in your area:

If you'd like to try the Black Cohosh I use, I get it from Amazon and here's a link for it:

I take 2 capsules per day with my other supplements, usually at the same time.

I'm curious, what have you found that brings your relief from these dreaded hot flashes?


bottom of page