Menopause Night Sweats, also known as “nocturnal or sleep hyperhidrosis”, are in essence hot flashes at night.
The causes and mechanisms for hot flashes and night sweats are the same. However, one major difference is the excessive sweating.
Often, the nighttime sweating is so intense, that you wake up with wet pajamas and lay on soaked sheets. After it’s over, you have chills and search for the covers you just tossed out of bed. Often heart palpitationsaccompany the night sweats and add to the misery. Some women also experience nausea and headaches as part of the symptoms.
The number of menopause night sweats can vary from an occasional episode to several attacks in one night. No wonder that women with night sweats can barely function the next morning.
Night Sweats, Insomnia and Menopause
If you are having problems falling and staying asleep, lying on damp sheets with wet pajamas can only make it worse. No wonder women in menopause feel cranky and “brain dead” so often.
Sweating excessively certainly does not help with sleep problems, regardless of the reason for the insomnia in menopause. Tossing and turning when you are desperately trying to sleep causes stress. Stress is a common trigger for night sweats.
Learning some basic relaxation techniques will not only help you with stress related sleeplessness, it may well avoid some night sweat attacks in the first place.
Insomnia is a common menopause symptom. Many experts believe that the insomnia is actually caused by night sweats.However, we believe that insomnia can be a separate symptom, often caused by low progesterone levels.
Treatments for Night Sweats
Night Sweat Treatments should help with the two aspects of the symptom:
- excessive sweating
Most common for night sweat treatments are the herbs and remedies that are used for hot flashes. But there are some specific options for natural remedies for those “hot flashes at night”.
One proven treatment for menopasue night sweats is Remifemin Good Night, which contains standardized black cohosh plus some additional herbs for a good night’s sleep.
The combination of herbs to help with night time sweating, plus some of the methods to keep your body cool, will ensure a good night’s sleep again.
Menopause Sleepwear – Personal Cooling Systems
There are two additional ways to deal with menopause night sweats – menopause sleepwear and cooling systems.
Menopause sleepwear is made from special fabrics to keep the body cool and to wick the sweat away from the body.
A personal cooling system such as special mattress pads, pillows or the bed fan, is another method to help with your night sweats. They keep your body cool in bed, either by cooling the bed or by keeping the air flowing under your bedcover.
These systems are superior to regulare fans because they provide individual control and your partner will not be affected. Just follow the link to see what options are available.
9 Tips on How to Stop Excessive Sweating
Here are 9 tips on how to stop excessive sweating. Some of the things may not be anything new, but some you may not have heard about.
It is important to avoid the common hot flash triggers, but did you know that there are specific night sweat triggers as well?
Tips to Deal with Menopause Night Sweats:
- Use all cotton sheets and natural fibers if you don’t have hot flash pajamas or cooling sheets.
- Avoid heavy meals, especially those that contain a lot of refined carbs, before going to bed. This creates not only a blood sugar imbalance but also raises your body temperature.
- Make sure you have water, unsweetened diluted fruit juice, or herb tea available at night.
- Cool down the room or use a personal cooling system.
- Avoid hot showers or baths. Take a cool shower (not too cold or your body’s central temperature system will race to bring your body temperature back up in a “flash”).
- Make sure the room has good airflow or use a fan (a Bed Fan is the best solution).
- Control your anxiety by practicing deep breathing, or meditation (follow the link for some ideas).
- Avoid taking medications that can cause hot flashes / night sweats. (If you have to use these medications, don’t take them too close to bedtime).
- If you take progesterone, take it at night. Progesterone will help you sleep.
Avoid Medications that Increase Sweating
There are several classes of medication that can lead to excessive sweating and make our menopause night sweats worse:
- All types of Antidepressant medications have night sweats as a known side effect which occurs in just under 25% of people.
- Some common medications such as Aspirin and Acetaminophen(and other antipyretics) can cause sweating in some people.
- Niacin can cause flushing and hot flashes (Although from personal experience I can say that the sweating and burning from Niacin is very different than hot flashes or night sweats.).
- Tamoxifen, used for the treatment of breast cancer, is notorious for causing excessive sweating.
- Other medicications. Check the side effects of the specific medication to see if sweating is listed.
If you take any of these medications, talk to your health care professional for alternatives to stop excessive sweating during night sweat attacks. At least find out if you can avoid taking those medications before you go to bed.
A Final Word
In essence the ways to deal with menopasue night sweats are similar to thetreatment of hot flashes. Always start with the least invasive and more natural treatment such as menopause sleepware or herbal supplements.
Only if these approaches don’t solve the problem, consider other options such as hormone therapy.