Hot flashes in men can most certainly be caused by Low Testosterone. Traditionally a cornerstone of the female going through the menopause, Hot flashes or (known as “Hot flushes” in UK parlance if you don’t mind). This is a symptom that I certainly don’t envy them, as a 38 year old man I’m not particularly enamored to be going through the ‘change’ at the same time as my own mother! Stopping Testosterone Therapy has definitely increased my symptoms.
So technically I am going through a premature “andropause” i.e: the male equivalent of the female menopause. But I prefer the term “manopause” as it just seems – well, just a little bit more descriptive.
Hot flashes are common in the manopause apparently, low testosterone has caused me a whole lot of hurt. I feel like I’m almost 40 going on 95.
So .. What causes Hot Flashes in men ?
Ok, hot flashes can be caused by Low T, an overactive thyroid (Hyperthyroid), Hypoglycemia (Low blood sugar) and blood pressure that is too low. Don’t be alarmed, they are not the end of the world. But you should see a Doctor just to rule out anything more serious and to help put your mind at ease. It seems that it’s mainly changes in hormones levels, in particularly hormone imbalances that bring out these hot flashes. They can occur at any time of the day and often just come out of nowhere. They commonly occur at night and are also called the “night sweats”.
what is a Hot Flash?
Hot flashes are usually a combination of the following signs and symptoms:
- Sudden onset of feeling too hot normally in the upper body but can be an all over sensation of heat in the face, neck, arms, torso, and sometimes the whole body.
- Heart Palpitations, rapid, irregular or missing heart beats often accompanied by anxiety.
- Flushing, Basically getting a ‘big red face on’ maybe even noticing a sensation of ears burning.(the same as when you can feel the wife discussing your latest ‘man toy’ purchase with her pals.
- Sweating getting your sweat on ranging from a light ‘dab on’ to the full on ‘gary glitter in a playground.’
- Cold chills /shivers can follow hot flashes, the same experience you may have when your wife ‘chances upon’ your late night browsing history.
- Poor Sleep can be caused by hot flashes or alternatively known as the night sweats. Testosterone levels are determined by our circadian rythm and may be at its lowest at night time. Our testosterone levels are normally at their highest in the morning upon waking – this is the reason for the ‘morning salute’ that greets us if we are lucky!
- Other Symptoms of Hot Flushes: Dizzy,Nausea, Headaches and feelings of overwhelming anxiety.
What’s the best way for men to deal with hot flashes?
Turn down your heating : My wife just loves to have the house’ subtropical’ having the thermostat cranked up to the ‘ impending global warming’ setting. She doesn’t appreciate that, “hey love it’s mid-winter why do you think that you should be able to walk around the house in just a T shirt with impunity from old jack frost outside?”
Maybe it’s my miserly ways coming into play but perhaps just by turning the heating down a little and wearing a sweater instead will make my hot flashes more bearable. Too much warmth in a room is a classic trigger for a hot flash.
TRY and avoid Stress: Stress and anxiety is another one of the main triggers of hot flashes. If you can, try and nip things in the bud. If you know that something is likely to put you under stress either try and avoid it or use other methods to manage that stress better. Now I’m not saying that’s a good excuse to finally get in a that young thai au pair to deal with the children. But, working out what is likely to put you into that stress condition. Also keep in mind that although a small amount of stress can be a great motivator. It also can affect the healing process and certainly slow down any recovery. I personally feel that stress has slowed down my own recovery from having low testosterone.
Alcohol, rich foods and smoking : This should be obvious, after all anything that we enjoy in abundance tends to be bad for us. Even small amounts of alcohol can set off hot flashes, but do try and not let this condition ruin our lives. Just be sensible and know your limits man.
Spicy food, curries, kebabs and alot of high fat/calorie takeouts can set off a hot flash. Be sensible what you eat and try and keep things healthy and balanced.
When I find a hot flush coming on I personally like to head outside into the cooler air and just sit down and try and let things pass. Deep breathing techniques often help. Anything that seems to lower my heart rate and calm the heart palpitations help my hot flashes to pass. I have had them last for only a minute through to a full flown hour long odyssey. That one was a real bitch
Hyperthyroidism induced Hot flashes
Recently while increasing my thyroxine dosage for being hypothyroid I have experienced more Hot flashes through the dose increase. This is not very pleasant at all. But I guess anyone of you guys out there that’s also Hypothyroid and reading this will understand just what I mean, getting a slow and steady increase in Thyroxine is essential, but at some point in finding our ideal dose of T4 (or maybe even T3 if you are on armour).
We will end up experiencing the palpitations and hot flashes that come from turning slightly hyperthyroid. Normally following up with regular blood tests at the doctors looking at the TSH and T3 and T4 blood serum levels to try and work out exactly where we are.
I’m still trying to keep a cool head and I’m sure that the hot flashes will eventually pass when my testosterone and thyroid hormones balance out somewhere near to where they should be ideally. But just try and stay cool, man up and let the hot flash pass.Drew