Hot flushes (or hot flashes) and general difficulty with keeping cool are some of the most common symptoms of menopause - and with the summer approaching, just the thought of all that hot weather can be enough to bring you out in a sweat! Here are five top tips for staying cool...
As women go through menopause, and as we get older in general, it can be more difficult to regulate our body heat - and this can be worse in extreme temperatures. Whether you’re at home, on the beach or in the office, hot temperatures can make life very uncomfortable.
During menopause, fluctuating levels of the hormone oestrogen can cause hot flushes and night sweats, which can be distressing, embarrassing and inconvenient. Dehydration and overheating can also be a significant problem in hot weather, especially if you have any existing health problems.
Here we look at some top tips for coping with menopausal hot flushes and staying cool during the summer months.
Five top tips for staying cool and comfortable
1) Wear loose, comfortable clothing
Wearing loose, comfortable clothing and layering your outfits can help you to keep cool and make it easier for you to regulate your temperature, by simply removing or adding a layer.
It’s best to avoid clothes made from wool, silk and most synthetic fabrics, as these can trap heat. Opt instead for cotton, linen or bamboo, which are naturally breathable. And don’t forget your hat, sunglasses and a good sunscreen!
2) Keep well hydrated
Dehydration can be a serious problem during the summer months, and it can also make hot flushes worse. You should drink plenty of cool water or other clear liquids, such as squashes or juice, to help regulate your body temperature.
It can help to keep a bottle of chilled water nearby, so you can take regular sips. Ice pops are another good way of helping to stay cool and keep your fluid levels up. However, you should avoid drinking too much caffeine or alcohol, as they have a dehydrating effect. Caffeine, alcohol and hot and spicy foods can also trigger hot flushes.
3) Seek out the shade
If you’re suffering from extreme heat or hot flushes, you should stay out of the sun during the hottest part of the day (between 11am and 3pm) and find a cool spot indoors or in the shade.
Applying a body spritz, such as Jennifer Young Morning Body Spray, can help you to cool down and re-energise:
“This spray has really helped me. I use it to freshen up and wake up in the morning and I carry it with me, just in case.’ Live Better With community member
The Live Better With community also recommend Menomagic, a natural cream which is formulated with four essential oils to help cool the skin, and the Brobe Cooling Gel Neck Wrap, a stylish neck tie which offers instant core body temperature relief and lasts up to 5 hours.
4) Create a comfortable sleeping environment
To help make your bedroom more comfortable at night, you should make sure it’s well ventilated by opening a window or using a fan.
To keep cool on those hot summer nights, and keep hot flushes at bay, the Live Better With community recommend wearing bamboo pyjamas, which are soft, moisture-wicking and super breathable:
“These are the best pyjamas in the world. With other nightwear, my skin can't breathe and I wake up drenched in sweat. These pyjamas are so light and soft and comfortable and breathable - I love them.” Live Better With Community member
Using special cooling gel products can also help to cool you down and reduce night sweats. The Keep Cooling With Menopause Kit contains three tried and tested favourites: the GelO Cool Pillow Mat, which can be popped inside your pillowcase for instant cooling relief; the Gel Eye Mask, which helps to soothe hot skin and reduce puffiness; and the Physicool Rapid Cooling Mist, which cools, calms and gently moisturises hot, flushed and uncomfortable skin.
5) Choose the right bedding
It’s also important to choose the right bedding to help with keeping cool during menopause.
Start by swapping your normal duvet for a thinner alternative. You should also make sure your bedding is comfy and breathable. The Live Better With community recommend the Bamboo Double Duvet & Bed Sheet, which are thermo-regulating and will help to keep you feeling dry and comfortable, whatever the temperature:
“These are super soft, really good quality & keep you really comfortable! Definitely helped with night sweats. Love them.” Live Better With community member
Do you have any tips to help with staying cool during summer? Why not join the Live Better With community forum.