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Are Hot Flashes the Symptoms of Cancer ?

Warmth spreads through your body, beads of sweat began to form down your neck, and the moment you look at yourself in the mirror, you see your face flush red as though your skin is on fire, and your heart drumming harder like never before, what on earth is going on here? “OMG, is this Cancer?” or “a side effect of something else?”

Don’t worry, it wouldn’t be cancer though, but it definitely is Hot
Flushes. Now, what are Hot Flushes?

What is a Hot Flush ?

Hot Flush is that sudden feeling of warmth occurring especially over the area of the neck, the chest and the face followed by rapid pacing of the heart, continuous sweating and sometimes flushing of the skin. These kinds of symptoms occur mostly during the perimenopause and menopause.

There are many factors that lead to hot flushes, but the primary cause is the fluctuations in the estrogen levels, which shows a huge effect on the body temperature and ultimately increases the stress levels.

What causes Hot Flushes? And what does it lead to?

You cannot point out a particular thing and say that this caused my Hot Flushes, but many-a-times it is related to the brain’s activity that deals with heat production and loss. During menopause you experience one heck of a roller coaster ride, where your hormones start to act weird along with the progesterone and the estrogen levels having huge variations.

There are other cases where Hot Flushes might have alternate causes,
for example:

Thyroid condition:

Some symptoms like heat intolerance and rapid heartbeat would just be related to your thyroid issue such as Hyperthyroidism that reflect some symptoms of menopause where the thyroid hormones go to a huge extent increasing body temperature and metabolism.

On-going cancer Treatments:

While undergoing cancer treatments there are chances that hot flushes may show up, not due to the very presence of cancer but due to side effects caused by treatments.Radiation, chemotherapy, or any other hormone therapy can cause hot flushes as a side-effect.

So how do I take control when I go through this?

Get Medication:

There are few medicines that help to ease Hot Flushes like Hormone Replacement Therapy, anti-depressants, Blood Pressure regulator medicines, and anti-convulsants that you can opt.

Stress release:

Reducing stress levels might help in decreasing anxiety and other mental affects which show a negative impact on Hot Flushes.

What can I do about Hot Flushes?

For most of the women, Hot Flushes occur as a part of regular ageing, but paradoxically this can also be the disruptive part of ageing, reason? The untimely occurrence of a Hot Flush. Most of the time you might be worried about the wrong time that a Hot Flush can occur for example during an important meeting, or during midnights along with night sweats that keep you from having your good night sleep. What to do

when you face a time like this?

There are several ways to address Hot Flushes, although they are not considered curable since Hot Flush is a natural occurrence that happens due to hormonal changes that show up during the age 40 to 55. But sometiny improvements in lifestyle, having alternate therapy sessions and reducing stress levels might help.

What affect does my lifestyle have on Hot Flushes?

Your lifestyle plays a huge role in how you deal with Hot Flushes. There are several ways through which one’s lifestyle defines how Hot Flushes affect an individual. Some of the ways include:

  • Dressing in layers.
  • Opting to wear natural fibres in place of synthetic one’s.
  • Using cold water and wet-wipes to cool the back of your neck
    while there’s a sensation of a hot flush coming.
  • Intentional avoiding of triggers.
  • Having a proper medication.

1. Dressing in layers:

Wearing layers allows for easier adjustment to changes in body temperature. When a hot flush occurs, you can remove layers to cool down quickly.
Apart from that, layering helps manage temperature fluctuations throughout the day, especially when moving between different environments with varying temperatures.

2. Opting to wear natural fibres instead of synthetic ones:

Natural fibres like cotton and linen are more breathable than synthetic materials like polyester or nylon. They allow for better flow of air, which can help regulate body temperature and minimize sweating during hot flushes.
Synthetic fabrics, on the other hand, can trap heat and moisture, exacerbating discomfort during episodes.

3. Using cold water and wet wipes to cool the back of your neck:

Applying cold water or using wet wipes on the back of the neck during a hot flush can provide instant relief by helping to lower body temperature. The neck contains blood vessels close to the skin’s surface, so cooling this area can help dissipate heat more effectively and reduce the intensity of the hot flush.

4. Intentionally avoiding triggers:

Identifying and avoiding triggers that can exacerbate hot flushes, such as spicy foods, caffeine, alcohol, and hot beverages, can help minimize their frequency and severity. By making conscious choices toavoid these triggers, individuals can better manage their symptoms and maintain comfort.

5. Having proper medication:

For some individuals, medication prescribed by a healthcare provider may be necessary to manage severe or persistent hot flushes.Hormone therapy, antidepressants, or other medications can help regulate hormone levels or address underlying conditions contributing to hot flushes. It’s essential to work closely with a healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate medication and dosage for individual needs.

About 85% females report experiencing Hot flushes and approximately 55% of these females tend to experience Hot Flushes even before the signs of menopause become irregular.By understanding hot flushes and taking proactive steps, you can navigate this stage with confidence all the while maintaining a healthy and a fulfilling life.

Can Cancer Symptoms be Mistaken for Hot Flushes?

Study says that some symptoms of menopause can mimic gynaecological
cancer. The 3 most common gynaecologic cancers are:

1.Uterine Cancer
2.Ovarian Cancer
3.Cervical Cancer.

Uterine and ovarian cancers are more common in postmenopausal women and the most common symptom of uterine cancer is abnormal uterine bleeding, which occurs in 75% to 90% of people with this type of cancer.

It can be hard to distinguish between abnormal bleeding and a regular menstrual period, especially during the menopausal transition. However, in people older than 45, some concerning clues will include bleeding between menstrual cycles, frequent bleeding, and heavy or prolonged bleeding.

Add some details about check with your doctor if you are worried….

Sources:
https://www.chestercountyhospital.org/news/health-eliving-blog/2023/august/can-myhot-flashes-be-a-sign-of-cancer


https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/327019

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