Women's Wellness June 2010
Tips for Reducing Hot Flashes
Hot flashes are frequently due to menopause. Luckily, if your hot flashes are mild, you may be able to manage them using these tips from the Mayo Clinic:
· Keep cool. Dress in layers so that you can remove clothing when hot flashes begin. Keep a window open or use a fan or air conditioner to keep air flowing in your house, at work or in the car. If you feel a hot flash coming on, sip a cold beverage. Wearing all cotton clothing can also help.
· Watch what you eat and drink. Hot and spicy foods, caffeinated beverages and alcohol can trigger hot flashes. Learn to recognize your own triggers and avoid those foods and drinks.
· Relax. Some women find relief from mild hot flashes through yoga, meditation, relaxation or other stress-reducing techniques.
· Breathe deeply. Deep, slow breathing and relaxation exercises may help to decrease hot flashes.
· Don't smoke. Smoking is linked to increased hot flashes. By not smoking, you may reduce hot flashes, as well as your risk of many serious health conditions such as heart disease, stroke and cancer.
For those women who experience more severe hot flashes, other medical treatments are available. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT), over-the-counter and prescription medications may be able to help. However, the decision to start the supplementation or replacement of hormones should only be made after you and your physician have evaluated your risks vs. the benefits.
For information about menopause services available at Crozer-Keystone, and to schedule an appointment with a Crozer-Keystone physician or midwife, call 1-800-CK-HEALTH (1-800-254-3258) or visit www.crozerkeystone.org and click on “Women.”