Hot flashes are one of the most widespread and maligned symptoms of woman experiencing the menopause. Hot flashes can best be described as a feeling of heat that spreads over the body, concentrating itself mostly in the head, neck and chest regions. These hot flashes can last anywhere from 30 seconds to several minutes, and can often cause uncomfortable visible symptoms such as excess perspiration and skin flushing. While studies have been somewhat inconclusive as to the true cause and nature of these hot flashes, most experts agree that it is likely a consequence of widely fluctuating hormone levels triggered by declining oestrogen levels.
Traditional solutions for hot flashes, popularised by many Western physicians, include oestrogen patches /tablets and Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). Unfortunately for many women, HRT is just not an option due to the associated health risks. Long term studies of HRT have indicated that women undergoing this treatment were more susceptible to strokes, heart attacks and breast cancer.
There do exist some other prescription medications that appear to be effective in treating hot flashes, so let’s have a look at them.
Firstly we have Clonidine, which is primarily used to control blood pressure. Clonidine has been met with mixed reactions, with some women claiming it to be effective and others commenting that it offered no tangible benefit. Clonidine also has some rather unpleasant side effects of its own including constipation, dry mouth, drowsiness and insomnia.
Next up for consideration is Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI‘s). These are most commonly found as a remedy for depression and anxiety, but some studies have indicated that SSRI‘s have an ability to reduce hot flashes. If you are looking to test this method then venlafaxine is the SSRI most extensively tested.
Finally, we have Megestrol acetate, a type of progesterone. Unfortunately, this medication can only be taken over a short period of time and includes weight gain as a side effect. Magestrol can also be dangerous if its intake is ceased abruptly, and thus is not usually a popular choice for combating hot flashes.
One thing that has become obvious when studying alternative solutions for hot flashes, is that most prescribed medications have unpleasant and often unpredictable side effects. It is for this reason that many women are now turning to natural herbal remedies as their preferred method of treating hot flashes. Free of any additional chemicals and substances, herbal remedies such as Curcuma Comosa are revolutionising the way in which women treat many symptoms of the menopause.
Women who are looking to undertake the natural method of treating hot flashes, should be aware that it is most effective when matched with a complete lifestyle overhaul. This includes making sensible dietary changes (such as consuming more fruit and veg) along with a regular exercise timetable. It may also be worthwhile taking some Vitamin E supplements along with a herbal remedy, but be careful not to exceed 400 international units (IU) per day, as larger doses have been linked to some cardiovascular disorders.