Perimenopause Answers

Night Sweats: Perimenopause

Studies have shown that about 75% of women going through perimenopause have night sweats. This common symptom, which is the nocturnal version of perimenopause hot flashes, and is medically known as sleep hyperhidrosis can begin soon after perimenopause does.

Night sweats during perimenopause are basically periods in the night when a woman's body heats up, usually in the upper body. This can be accompanied by palpitations, nausea, and headaches, and then followed by chills as the body cools back down. Because of the sudden increase in body temperature and the sudden flow of perspiration, women usually wake up from the discomfort. In fact, night sweats in perimenopause is one of the leading causes behind perimenopause insomnia.

For some women, night sweats happen several types a night. For others, it happens just once. Sometimes the episodes are severe, with the heat becoming unbearable, and other times it is very mild, with just a slight increase in body temperature. No matter how severe or frequent however, night sweats often disrupt a woman's sleep schedule. As a result of the lack of sleep, women find that they are tired during the day, are more irritable, are easily stressed, have trouble concentrating, and can have painful headaches. All of which are other symptoms of perimenopause.

Is anyone safe from night sweats during perimenopause?

It was mentioned earlier that 75% of women will experience night sweats during perimenopause. So who are the lucky 25%?

Women of Asian descent are the least likely to have night sweats, women of African descent are more likely to have night sweats, while Caucasian women find themselves in the middle. Studies have also found that women who start perimenopause younger are more likely to have night sweats than those who start late, such as their 50s. Other times, it is a pre-existing medical condition that can lead to night sweats in perimenopause. Some of these conditions include, but are not limited to anxiety, cancer, diabetes, neurological problems, and a thyroid disorder.

What can you do to cope with night sweats during perimenopause?

Similar to other perimenopause symptoms, there is no real cure for night sweats. Instead, women have to find ways to cope with the problem.

Like hot flashes, night sweats can be triggered. Because of this trend, women are usually advised to stay away from spicy food, caffeine, hot showers, alcohol, cigarettes, and diet pills. Sometimes having had a history of excessive use of these substances can make a woman more susceptible to night sweats during perimenopause.

Women are also advised to sleep with thin sheets and thin clothes, preferably cotton. Try to keep the room cool with fans or air-conditioners, and take a cool shower before bed. It may also be a good idea to keep a jug of ice water by your bed so you can drink it and cool yourself down when an episode occurs.

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