Menopause has a number of symptoms associated with it, one of the most common of which is night sweats. They can last for 1 to 10 years during the menopause transition and continue on after menopause. They can be mild or severe, and occur every once in a while or multiple times per night.
What Are Night Sweats?
Night sweats are hot flashes that occur while you are sleeping and can cause you to sweat excessively. Nearly 75% of women experience them during the menopausal transition.
Symptoms of Night Sweats
Night sweats produce several symptoms, including:
- Sudden flashes of heat
- Excessive sweating
- Irregular heartbeat
These symptoms and a lack of sleep can also result in the following symptoms:
- Exhaustion and fatigue
- Sleep disorders
- Trouble concentrating
Tips to Avoid Night Sweats
If you are trying to avoid night sweats, take time to assess your lifestyle and habits that could be triggering your night sweats. If you can eliminate some of these, you may be able to alleviate your symptoms and even prevent night sweats.
To help lessen the frequency and severity of your night sweats, consider some of the following options.
Water. Drink the recommended amount of eight glasses of water each day. Staying hydrated will help regulate your body's temperature. In addition, it provides cool relief after you experience a night sweat.
Caffeine. By reducing your consumption of caffeine, you can help regulate the sympathetic nervous system and prevent it from triggering night sweats.
Cold shower or bath. Take a bath in lukewarm water, not hot, to prevent overheating your body. Baths can help you relax and calm down before you go to bed.
Yoga. Try to relieve some stress by practicing yoga, meditating, or doing deep breathing exercises. Yoga can also help regulate hormones.
Alternative medicine. Try using herbal supplements to help balance hormone levels. Many women find that black cohosh, ginseng, and dong quai are effective, but they should not be used over a long period of time.
Although night sweats can be unpleasant and disruptive, there are many ways to lessen their frequency and avoid them altogether without resorting to medical treatment.