Night Sweats

hormone night sweats sleep Aug 21, 2020

Vasomotor symptoms include hot flushes and night sweats. Most women who experience vasomotor symptoms experience both but what if you are primarily or only experiencing night sweats? 

Did you know there are other causes of night sweats aside from the menopausal transition? It is certainly worth ruling these out first.

 

The most common cause I see of this is heighten cortisol levels due to stress and anxiety.

Look at what's happening in your world. Have you experienced your worse nights after a troubling day or are they before an event you are not looking forward to? This is a huge clue that the culprit is cortisol. You need to consider how you can reduce your stress levels. If there are life circumstances you can change,  change them, and add in as many stress management techniques as you can eg breathe work, exercise, meditation.

Speak to your healthcare provider and see if supplements like magnesium and B vitamins are right for you.

Herbs to also enquire about include: Zizyphus, this herb is specific for night sweats and insomnia caused by stress or anxiety. Withania otherwise known as Ashwagandha is another favourite of mine which helps reduce sleep and improve sleep. Hops also makes my top 3 as its specific for insomnia caused by flushing as it can help reduce LH surges (another cause of heat and sweating). Others to consider include: chamomile, oats, passionflower, lemon balm, skullcap, and the list goes on. It really is best to speak to a professionally trained herbalist to help find the most appropriate for you as they are so many to choose from and they each have other actions apart from helping to reduce the stress response.

 

Have you considered the role of food?

Drinking alcohol before bed can trigger sweats as can having a sugary dessert. If you go to bed with a blood sugar high more than likely a blood sugar low will hit you during the night and you may wake to feel hot and sweaty. Consuming foods you are sensitive to or allergic to can also be troublesome.

 

Do you have sleep apnea? Did you know people with untreated sleep apnea are 3 times more likely to excessively sweat at night? If you have never had a sleep apnea test maybe now is the time?

 

Certain medications have night sweats as possible side effects. If this is you please speak to your healthcare provider about alternatives, do not stop your medication.

Medication examples include:

  • anti-depressants
  • blood sugar lowering medication
  • hormone-blocking drugs
  • temperature lowering medication
  • blood pressure medication

 

Other causes include:

  • certain infections
  • certain cancers
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