What are Hot Flashes?
Hot Flashes — sometimes called a hot flush — is a momentary sensation of heat that may be accompanied by a red, flushed face and sweating. The cause of hot flashes is not known, but may be related to changes in circulation.
Hot flashes occur when the blood vessels near the skin’s surface dilate to cool. This produces the red, flushed look to the face. A woman may also perspire to cool down the body. Also, some women experience a rapid heart rate or chills.
Hot flashes accompanied with sweating can also occur at night. These are called night sweats and may interfere with sleep.
A hot flush is a hot flash plus a visual appearance of redness in the face and neck.
How Long Will I Have Hot Flashes?
The severity and duration of hot flashes vary among women going through menopause. Some women have hot flashes for a very short time during menopause. Other women may have hot flashes — at least to some degree — for life. Generally, hot flashes are less severe as time passes.