A hot flash is a sudden and intense feeling of heat that is felt on the upper parts of the body, like the face, chest, and neck. There is a sensation of heat which may be accompanied by redness of the face, night sweats, increased heartbeat and, sometimes, a tingling in the fingers. These symptoms are very commonly noted in menopausal and peri-menopausal females. However, other disorders (like diabetes mellitus) may also cause hot flashes. Homeopathic medicines for hot flashes includes medicines like Sepia, Amylenum Nitrosum, and Lachesis Muta.
Hot flashes usually occur in women between the age group of 40-55 years. Some females also experience these during their regular cycles. They tend to occur more during the night and tend to affect sleep.
An episode of a hot flash can last for between one to five minutes, or occur multiple time in an hour. In some cases, it occurs less frequently, (like a few times a week or month) while some experience it daily. These hot flashes can last for approximately six months to a year but can last longer in some women.
Top Homeopathic Medicines for Hot flashes
Homeopathy has a natural solution for hot flashes. With the help of natural homeopathic medicines, hot flashes can be reduced to negligible levels, thereby improving the quality of life.
1. Sepia: For Hot Flashes with Weakness
Sepia is a medicine indicated for hot flashes in a female during the menopausal period. Sweat accompanies the episodes of hot flashes. Another fundamental indicative feature of Sepia is that there is marked weakness with a tendency to faint (along with the hot flashes). There is a lack of energy with a feeling of fatigue. It very helpful for all the ailments arising during climacteric/menopausal period and is suitable for individuals who are emotionally very sensitive and can become easily nervous.
Key Indications for Using Sepia:
– Emotional Sensitivity
2. Amylenum Nitrosum: For Hot flashes with Excessive Sweat
Amylenum Nitrosum is a remedy for hot flashes where there is excessive perspiration. Its sphere of action is on the vasomotor nerves which affect the arteries and capillaries (causing their dilatation). Therefore, it is one of the top remedies for hot flashes. Hot flashes which are followed by an episode of drenching sweats is a marked feature of this remedy. One may also experience headaches along with the hot flashes. There is a prominent flushing of the face. Episodes of hot flashes are usually followed by a period of coldness and pallor (paleness). There can be a throbbing sensation in the whole body during the hot flashes. Also, helpful in cases where there is a history of heart complaints along with the hot flashes.
Key Indications for Using Amylenum:
– Excessive Perspiration
– Flushing of Face
3. Lachesis Muta: For Hot flashes at Menopause
Lachesis is a remedy indicated for menopausal ailments. It is well suited to females during or around the menopause phase. It is helpful for hot flashes which are accompanied by palpitation, headaches, and a feeling of fainting. One may also have hot perspiration along with the hot flashes. Hot flashes also felt at the vertex area (top of the head). The flashes usually occur on falling asleep or on waking up but are generally worse at night. There is an overall feeling of congestion in the head causing congestive headaches. The palpitations felt are worse in a warm room or during the morning hours after waking up. One cannot tolerate tight clothing, especially around the waist area. Well indicated in individuals who have associated high blood pressure with these menopausal ailments.
Key Indications for Using Lachesis:
– Menopausal Ailments
– Aversion to tight clothing
Other Important Remedies
4. Sulphur: For Hot Flashes with Night Sweats
Sulphur is a remedy for frequent episodes of hot flashes. There is a sensation of heat in the entire body. Heat accompanies the hot flashes in the head, hands, and feet. One may also experience a sensation of emptiness in the stomach during an episode. Another indicative feature of sulphur is profuse sweats at night, especially at the neck and back of the head. One may also experience heat in only one side of the body.
5. Causticum: For Hot flashes with Reduced Sexual Desire
Causticum is a remedy indicated for hot flashes during menopause accompanied by heat along with sweat, especially during sleep. It is a well-indicated medicine for night sweats occurring typically around 4:00 am. A sensation of heat in the whole body is present, which is worse during the late evening or night hours (mostly during 6:00pm-8: 00 pm). There is a tendency to sweat easily on the slightest exertion. One is also vulnerable to develop anxiety, sadness, and weakness along with these complaints. Along with hot flashes, there can be reduced (or absence of) sexual desire.
6. Glonoine: For Hot Flashes that are Frequent and Sudden
Glonoine is also among the remedies for hot flashes during menopause. It is indicated in cases where there is a flushing of heat to the head. The hot flashes occur daily, and there are frequent episodes during a day. Sudden onset of hot flashes with pressure in the head, nausea, and vertigo are other symptoms. One feels as if there is a loss of senses, they feel dizzy and light headed. They find it difficult to go out alone. There may be associated swelling and numbness in the feet during menopause. Complaints are worse after sun exposure.
7. Sulphuric Acid: For Hot Flashes with Trembling
Sulphuric Acid is a indicated for hot flashes during climacteric (menopausal) period. With hot flashes, there is a feeling of tremors all over the body. There is marked weakness and debility during menopause. There is a lot of restlessness with a sense of wanting to do everything hurriedly. The symptoms of hot flashes get worse by the smell of coffee. There are palpitations without any anxiety or fear.
8. Calcarea Carbonicum: For Hot flashes with Profuse Sweating
Calcarea Carb is suited to obese women who experience hot flashes with profuse sweat. Sweat is mostly on the head and chest area during sleep. There is an overall tendency to sweat easily. There is a lot of sweating even from slight physical exertion. There is a tendency of developing loose and flabby muscles. There sensation of burning in the top of the head with much perspiration. The sweating of the head might be so intense that it wets the pillow. There may be sweating at night along with palpitations.
9. Sanguinaria Canadensis: For Hot flashes with a Flushed Face
Sanguinaria Canadensis is a medicine indicated for hot flashes accompanied with burning in the face and head. There is a feeling of fullness or congestion in the head. One may also experience severe pain in the head with nausea. The hot flashes are accompanied by a flushed red face and hot hands. The face turns hot and red as if from the congestion of blood. Chills, weakness and a feeling of sickness may follow. The menses become profuse and dense around the menopausal period. Along with the hot flashes, there may be a complaint of leucorrhoea during menopause.
10. Pulsatilla: For Hot Flashes followed by Chilliness
Pulsatilla is indicated for cases of hot flashes where the person experiences a spell of chilliness following a hot flash. Hot flashes are worse from the warmth of air or in a closed room. Profuse sweating on the face and scalp especially at night, flushes of heat with redness of the face, hot flashes with mood swings and depression during menopause are other associated symptoms. The person is very irritable and tends to weep. She may also be very sensitive and cry easily. Generally, the woman tends to overall feel better in the open air.
Causes of Hot Flashes
There is no specific cause given as to why hot flashes occur, but there are various theories which explain their occurrence. About 60-70% of all women experience it during their menopause. However, it is not mandatory that every female will have it during menopause. Given below are the various factors which are related to cause hot flashes:
A Drop in the Estrogen Levels
Before menopause, the hormone estrogen is present in the body in the form of Estradiol (released by the ovaries). During and after menopause there is a drop in the Estrogen levels. This decrease in the levels affects the hypothalamus (Thermostat of the body), which regulates the temperature of the body. Reduction in one’s ability to tolerate heat makes her more vulnerable to experience hot flashes.
An increase of Thyroid Hormone (Hyperthyroidism)
An increase in thyroid levels increases the metabolic rate of the body. This increase in metabolism leads to hot flashes and excessive sweating.
Anti-Depressants and Other Medications
Certain drugs like anti-depressants and anti-hypertensive medications also cause hot flashes in many cases. The onset of hot flashes is noted after the usage of either of the drugs. In these cases, substituting the medicine or reducing the dosage can help reduce the hot flashes.
Stress, Anxiety, and the Production of Adrenaline
During stress or anxiety, the body increases the production of adrenaline. This excess of adrenaline can cause hot flashes or a generalincrease in the body’s temperature. The body feels heated, and there can be associated with the symptoms of palpitations and increased sweating.
The factors that can trigger hot flashes during menopause include smoking, obesity, alcohol, exposure to hot temperature, wearing tight clothes, stress, anxiety and excessive intake of caffeine.
Tips to Manage Hot Flashes with Food
Plant Estrogen: Also known as phytoestrogens or dietary estrogen, these are natural sources of estrogen found in certain plants and legumes. They have a structure similar to Estradiol. Foods that contain Estrogen are Flaxseeds, apricots, oranges, peaches, carrots, peas, soya beans pinto beans, lentils, and olives.
Foods rich in magnesium and vitamin E seem to help in reducing the intensity and frequency of the hot flashes. They help in controlling the milder forms of hot flashes.
Apple Cider Vinegar seems to play more of a supportive role since frequent intake of apple cider vinegar can help reduce the intensity of hot flashes.
Avoiding caffeine and alcohol can help reduce hot flashes. These two are considered to be very significant triggering factors. Reducing their intake can lessen the hot flashes.
Quitting smoking can be of great help since it can improve the temperature regulation and metabolism of the body.
Exercise and meditation can help smoothly transition into menopause smoothly. These practices help calm down the mood swings, insomnia, and hot flashes.