Are these Hot Flashes for Real and do I have to Live with them?
By Dr Dale Baird
Hot flashes are irritating and a nuisance. Hot flashes usually occur during the daytime and you can experience one or more times throughout the day. For no apparent reason you feel yourself start to perspire and then break into a sweat that can last seconds and up to minutes in length. You can also have night sweats where you wake up in bed and you soak the sheets. Then having to change the sheets, sleep is interrupted and then try and go back to sleep. This can be one of the reasons you can be tired in the mornings.
Along with the hot flashes you can have foggy brain, forgetfulness and sleep disruption that can lead to sleep deprivation. Depression, anxiety, weight gain, lack of energy, dryness, and loss of motivation are also frequent complaints of women suffering from hot flashes. These symptoms can surround the condition called menopause and denotes the years surrounding the time in life where hormone levels are decreasing and may have become imbalanced.
They are an indication for testing of your hormone levels in a comprehensive panel that includes three different estrogen levels, testosterone, progesterone, androstenedione, 17 -hydroxyprogesterone, dihydroxytestosterone, androstenedione, Another for Sleep and one that is essential for Testosterone production. A 16 hour adrenal cortisol stress test that measures 4 cortisol levels during the day until bedtime can be added in order to assess the health of your adrenal glands and your ability to handle the stress in your life. Cortisol is an essential hormone for energy and our fight or flight mechanism.
Thyroid Function Testing
Your hot flashes can also be an indication of underlying fatigue where we would also want to review your thyroid function. Hormone Replacement with bioidentical hormones can help balance your levels naturally and also helping to alleviate the symptoms of hot flashes.