Main Article on Hot Flashes Question: Please describe your experience with hot flashes. Submit Your Comment Comment from: lisa, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 13 I have had hot flashes for 8 years now. They are constant. About 1 every 45 minutes. At night I sleep with a fan right beside my bed. I have fans all over the house. I also have extreme anxiety as soon as a hot flash starts. It is almost like a warning sign. It’s been incredibly hard, luckily I work from home. I wouldn’t be able to manage a regular job. I don’t know anyone who has gone through this like I have. Comment from: T. Christine, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 20 I cried reading some of the comments of the others. I've felt so alone these past 7 years going through the hot flashes, no sleep because of the hot flashes. I dread bed time, knowing that hot flashes are inevitable. I'm 54 but look younger, my husband is 30, he's understanding as he can be. I was embarrassed to tell him all I've been going through, but sharing with my husband has helped me. It's not a dirty secret anymore. Weight gain is my main concern lately, and I started snoring too! Ugh! Comment from: Ohara, 75 or over Male (Caregiver) Published: May 01 I am a male, 84 years old and have had hormone treatment for prostate cancer. This was over a year ago. I suffered badly from hot flushes and excess phlegm in my chest. We all thought the problem was caused by the female hormones and scarring in my lungs. A week ago I changed my diet. After 84 years I gave up all pasta and grain. Symptoms vanished in a week. Had to share. Comment from: Lety, 45-54 (Patient) Published: April 14 I am 47 years old and just recently started experiencing hot flashes, but they come and go. My face is red and feels hot. I also feel cold all of a sudden after I feel less hot. Wonder if this symptom is common for menopause. Comment from: AC FAN ICED H2O dep, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 02 I’m 47 year old, and had a complete hysterectomy post breast cancer at age 39. For 8 years, I’ve been having hot flashes every 30 to 45 minutes, day and night, regardless of medicines, activities, etc. It is annoying, exhausting, debilitating, and depressing. Before the hot flash I feel severe back muscle pain, weakness, malaise, and in seconds the hot flash comes, accompanied by severe heat that makes me take off clothes or covers. After a few minutes, I start getting cold and sleepy, I start putting on layers again. Comment from: Partridge, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: May 12 I am feeling burn at my back from neck down below. It is like a hot burning sensation and is present when I lie down. When I do some work there is no pain. But when I lie down it feels like a hot sensation all over my back. It has been ongoing for like 3 months now. Wondering if it is hot flash and how to treat it. Comment from: Noni, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 21 One of the things that has bothered me with hot flashes is the intense anxiety I feel just before the heat starts. I know a hot flash is coming by the heavy feeling in my chest and the anxious feel which comes over me. I don't seem to be able to find out anything about this additional feeling, only that anxiety can cause hot flashes. There must be others who experience the terribly anxious feeling which is the precursor to the hot flash. To me it is as distressing as the hot flash itself. Comment from: Maggie, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: October 14 I am an 84 year old female. In August I started with hot flash spells lasting 1/2 hour. However now the time has increased up to 3 hours at a time. All blood work, including thyroid, has come back within the normal ranges. I feel fine other than this. My general physician has no idea what is causing this. I have been keeping a diary and it seems to be both food related or when I get uptight. Comment from: JennyMaize, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 14 I have been perimenopausal for 3 cycles now. My menstrual cycles range from 20 to 100 days, with anovulatory cycles mixed in (I track my cycles using basal body temperatures so I might have a clue when to expect my next period). My periods themselves are the same. I just started getting hot flashes, always on the way to work oddly, with no obvious triggers. I don't eat breakfast until I get to work, and I don't drink coffee anymore. They feel like a 5 minute chemical peel on my face and arms. Very odd, no sweating. Comment from: Verka, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 08 I am confused on the hot flashes. If I stay very cold, they don’t occur very often. As soon as I get warm, there they come. Also, if I stay still in bed, they are not often, but I will have a hot flash as soon as I move, stand up, or walk. Seems odd, but I don’t know why it happens with every movement from being still. Wonder if that is normal. SLIDESHOW What Is Osteoporosis? Treatment, Symptoms, Medication See Slideshow Comment from: limeginger, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 04 First a wave of existential nausea like a plane dropping altitude, followed rapidly by sensation like someone pushing you headfirst into a vat of 200 degree water. My hot flash starts with my face, briskly spreads like poison down my neck, arms, torso, and legs. It pulses like a hot giant breathing on you. I only have them at night. In bed it starts with a bad dream. Awake with an awful feeling, heat spreads, covers seem 350 degrees, searing into flesh. I have had 3 to 4 episodes before bed; and 6-7 when asleep. They disappear for months, but they return. Comment from: dfall, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 13 I have what feels like hot flashes for hours on end. I'm 28. They started a year ago along with my chronic migraines. I've also been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. They are like this regardless of what medication I do or don't take, or what I do or don't eat or drink. My hormone levels are fine as well. I don’t understand what the heck is happening. Comment from: Nyk , 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: April 25 I have hot flashes only in the head and neck, sometimes daily for about 2 weeks, and then they stop. Comment from: Sudie, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 20 I had a hysterectomy at age 27 due to periods being too heavy and lasting too long (9 days long and using a box and a half of 40 pack tampons. I did not need hormones until age 52. I had hot flashes in my fifties. The hormone therapy stopped the hot flashes. I took hormones for 5 years and then was taken off of them. I went for about 6 years off hormones, changed doctors and was put back on hormone lotion. I didn’t like the application of the lotion so I went back to pills. After another doctor change, due to doctors moving, I was taken off hormones. I started back having hot flashes about 6 months after the last pill. I’ve been having hot flashes ever since. I will say the flashes are less often, but they come at the most inopportune time. Comment from: Besidemyself, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 27 I started having hot flashes about a year ago. Recently, they have become more severe, with heart palpitations in addition to the hot flashes. I tried a soy/black cohosh supplement which appeared to be working but now it doesn't work to suppress them at all. So I stopped using that as I felt like it was contributing to my heart palpitations. I have them 10 to 15 times a day. At night I wake up with them, drenched. If I'm out working in the yard, and have one, I'm immediately drenched as in wringing-wet drenched and have to change my clothes. I sure hope the intensity of these don't last as sometimes I wonder if the root cause is heart disease. So I'm having a full workup done next month, so I can find out if I have a heart involvement. Anxiety is high right now for me because of this and concerns about my employment. It is a vicious cycle! Comment from: Sleepy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 13 I went through menopause 10 years ago, the last month I'm having short bursts of hot flushes! No energy, little appetite, my pep has gone! Always tired, and it is awful! It's nowhere near as bad as it was! But hope it doesn't get worse. Comment from: mammacalda, 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: September 22 I'm also going through hot flashes and skipped periods at 46 years of age. I think that medicinal treatments may be very helpful for some women in the short term, otherwise there's a lot that you can do by changing your eating habits, more exercise (even walking) and de-stressing. There are many remedies to try (choose a good therapist), like Cimicifuga racemosa, Rhodiola rosea and Gynostemma pentaphyllum for hot flashes. In general you'll need more magnesium and calcium too. Keep searching for the right team to support you through this challenging phase. All the best to all of you. Comment from: 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 10 I have had uterus removed which is called abdominal hysterectomy and then years later I had my right ovary removed. I have had trouble with my left ovary every since. I was given a birth control shot 2 months ago I am 42 I think the shot was called premovara or something with a P. Now for the last month I have severe hot flashes all day and night. I have to change my shirt about 7 times a day. It is summer time and air conditioner is on. I had to turn down to 74 and it is still too cold. Every time I soak my shirt and my hair gets soaked I freeze so back under covers then hot again then take off covers and freeze again. I am exhausted and want to leave my home and run away from husband and dogs. I would have never left my dogs in a million years. Children are grown and doggies are my babies, but lately I would leave everything to just run away but where would I go. I had a pelvic ultrasound 2 days ago and ovary was shrunk so small she could hardly find it. 6 weeks ago it was big as softball. I really feel the shot has put me into premature or full blown menopause. I go back to OBGYN in 6 weeks for another shot. I am going to get blood test to check for menopause before I let them give me a shot. My mother had breast cancer stage 3 and is a 10 year survivor now but they have already told me no hormones and estrogen for me when I have menopause because of my mother. I am miserable and tired hot and cold. I hate it. I thought it only lasted 1 year but after reading about it lasting 5-10 I don't think I can take it that long. QUESTION If menopause occurs in a woman younger than ___ years, it is considered to be premature. See Answer Comment from: pammi, 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: September 10 They are terrible! I sweat like a man, I'm so hot I can't stand it, I take a fan almost every where I go, everywhere with an electric outlet. I'm African American, my hair "goes back” and frizzes up, I can't keep my hair done, relaxers just don't work any more. My deodorant cooks off, near the end of the day, I would smell something and realized it was me! I carry a baggy and washcloth and deodorant with me, in my purse. I am up maybe 3-4 times a night, my nightgown is usually soaked, from sweating. I always said I would be glad when menopause started, but boy was I wrong! I would have a period maybe once every 5 months, and even though the period would be very heavy, the other symptoms would stop. I'd be glad for the period. Comment from: lindalaw, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 17 I am 64 years old. I had a hysterectomy about 8 years ago. I get the worst hot flashes day and night! I used to use the Climara patch but stopped due to a history of breast cancer. I took Oestradiol by mouth, but it raised my blood pressure through the roof, so I had to stop. Now I am suffering with flashes all the time! Comment from: Lori, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 27 I get the hottest hot flashes. I’m always hot, and I always need a fan or an air conditioner, even in the winter when everyone else is cold. This has been going on for nearly 10 years. I was 47 when my period stopped. My face turns red like a tomato whenever I do anything, and sweat pours off me. Comment from: toeter, 55-64 Female Published: August 16 I have been postmenopausal for seven years now -- or I thought so. During the 8 years of menopause I did experience hot flashes, but not severely. They started between my shoulder blades spreading and rising up through my neck -- I found it fascinating, and fortunately didn't sweat much! Now, I seem to be having hot flashes again, which happens both night and day lasting about 4 minutes, and since the last couple of days. Comment from: Lou, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 14 I was experiencing mild hot flashes from the beginning of the premenopausal symptom of no period. I had my last monthly cycle in February and now in July I am no longer experiencing hot flashes. I am 49 and very confused about the wide range of symptoms associated with menopause. Am I lucky or will my cycle start again with the symptoms escalating. Comment from: helpme, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 09 In the past 6 years I have suffered. My menopause started with deep depression than came the severe hot flashes. Thank god the depression isn’t as bad as it was but just before a hot flash come and I get this down feeling. I’ve been to doctors they have prescribed Prozac, Premarin low level hormone. Nothing seems to help. I am crying now as I write this. My hot flashes are so severe I want to end it all sometimes. I haven't had a decent night’s sleep in years. I go through the everyday motions for my family I know that God is keeping me sane. I have tried everything but I am willing to try anything I am 53 years old. Comment from: Montessori teacher 1, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 06 I was angry for a long time but didn't realize it until it stopped, almost in one day. My family was so relieved. Then, a few months later, my periods stopped, at about age 47. Hot flashes began that leave sweat on my upper lip, forehead, armpits, trunk and crotch. Even my feet sweat during a hot flash. They have been unchanged , but less frequent, for the last 11 years, even during the three years I took Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). During the day I try to ignore them. During the night, I was awakened every 45 minutes; I was not asleep long enough to go through a complete sleep/brain wave cycle. No wonder I was forgetful and grouchy. Now I awaken 4 to 5 times a night, roll over, feel the heat start, throw off the covers and try to fall back to sleep, cover up again when I get cold. I sleep for the first 3 hours solid, then the flashes start up. I can have them as often as every 15 minutes, day or night, but not usually. I was diagnosed with breast cancer June 2009. No family history. I blame the HRT that I took for 3 years (stopped 4 years before diagnosis). Now I must take a drug, Tamoxifen, for the next 5 years that the oncologist assures me will make my hot flashes worse. My marriage has suffered over these last 11 years, since I break into a sweat any time my husband and I try to snuggle, cuddle, or just have much skin contact. I feel so un-sexy now. And once I start the Tamoxifen, it will get worse.