Remember the gentle warmth of summer, with a warm breeze and sunlight kissing your skin? Summers like that demanded cool glasses of lemonade and creamy ice cream. However, if you are now approaching menopause, summertime can become a nightmare. Hot flashes and night sweats seem to intensify the already intense summer heat.
Here’s a breakdown of how hot flashes work and some things you can do to keep them at bay.
How Do Hot Flashes Work?
Although many medical conditions can cause you to have hot flashes, menopause is the most common reason. When you are suffering from a hot flash, you will most likely experience:
- Excessive sweating in the upper body
- Increased heartbeat
- Red, flushed, or blotchy skin
- Sudden warmth spreading throughout your face and body
The exact cause of hot flashes is unknown, but medical professionals think it is most likely due to the restriction of blood during menopause combined with hormonal changes. Stress, alcohol, caffeine, and spicy food can bring on hot flashes, and while there is plenty of all those things in Miami, the biggest culprit is definitely the heat.
How Can I Stay Cool in the Miami Heat?
It’s already hot enough, so when Miami turns up the heat and your body does the same, what should you do to stay cool?
Stop Smoking – so, everyone knows that smoking isn’t good for you, but it’s also one of the biggest hot flash triggers. If you haven’t quit before, now is an excellent time to do so.
Carry a Fan – a small, battery operated fan can help you cool off when there is no shade in sight.
Stay Hydrated – drinking a lot of water keeps your body cool and helps you avoid fatigue, headaches, and dehydration.
Dress in Light, Loose-Fitting Clothes – ever notice that desert dwellers don’t wear skimpy clothing, but are enveloped in long, flowing robes? This not only protects their skin from the sun but also allows air to circulate. Stay away from restrictive clothing and wear light, loose clothing instead.
Take a Swim – swimming serves two purposes. It is a great low-impact aerobic activity and has the value-add of cooling down your body’s temperature.
Avoid Stress – stressful situations are a trigger for hot flashes, so do your best not to let stressful situations get the better of you, or avoid them altogether if you can. Take a moment, a few deep breaths, and a little meditation until you feel relaxed and calm.
How Do You Stay Cool and Stay Hot?
We all want to look younger when we’re approaching menopause. The fatigue, extra belly fat, and skin changes (hello, wrinkles) associated with menopause can not only wreak havoc on your appearance but also severely affect your self-esteem.
- Join a Gym. If just thinking about going outside in the intense Miami heat makes you begin to sweat, consider sweating it out inside. When going through menopause, one of the best things you can do to stay Miami sexy is to stay active. Not only will you be fighting the osteoporosis, insomnia, and chronic pain that can come with menopause, you’ll also be staying fit and trim. In addition, exercise stimulates the release of human growth hormone (HGH), which helps rejuvenate the skin. Getting 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily could take eight years off the appearance of your skin.
- Get Enough Sleep. Getting enough sleep will not only make you feel better, but it will also make you look better. After 50, your body produces less sleep-inducing melatonin and your brain becomes more sensitive to light. Make sure your sleep environment is pitch black, and your body will double its melatonin production. Try using a sleep mask, you’ll not only get to sleep sooner, but you’ll also sleep better.
- Boost Your Energy. Approximately 77% of us notice a decrease in energy as we age. The brain’s ability to produce GABA – the neurotransmitter that gives you calm, steady energy – drops after age 40. The good news is that as little as five minutes of meditation can increase your GABA levels by 27%. This helps you stay calm yet energized.
- Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy – Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, also known as BHRT, can help relieve the symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, weight gain, loss of libido, and lack of energy. As people age, hormone production changes. Bioidentical hormones are an exact match to the hormones your body produces naturally.
At HealthGAINS, our dedicated medical professionals are here to help you keep cool and stay hot this summer. If you need a little more support to combat the symptoms of menopause, give us a call or make an appointment online today.