How Long Do Hot Flashes Last (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Maximum Five Minutes 

The human body is unique, and there are a lot of factors that make it different from any other species. There are certain things or illnesses that every human has to endure. Some are gender-specific, while some may be age-specific. Some diseases or problems are also different in different countries.

Gender-specific illnesses are diverse as the anatomy of men and women is different in the human race. There are several diseases or problems that only men will suffer, or some only women will suffer. Womankind is known for the immense strength to endure difficult situations like menstrual cramps and childbirth.

The menstrual cycle is what marks the start of womanhood and lasts for about 35 to 40 years. After this time, when the menstrual cycle stops, the woman enters the phase of menopause.

How Long Do Hot Flashes Last?

Menopause is not a disease but a phase in a woman’s life, like childhood and adulthood. Every woman who crosses the age of 50 undergoes this phase. With the onset of menopause, several changes happen in a woman’s body over time.

As a woman approaches menopause, many hormonal changes happen in her body that cause emotional changes too. One other mandatory change that happens is hot flashes. Every woman experiences hot flashes during her menopause from time to time. 

Since it is a biological process, there are various other effects when hot flashes happen to a woman. There might be disruption in sleep or emotional outbreaks etc. Besides that, there are effects on the woman’s health too. Some women might experience low levels of energy, while some might feel tired.

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Hot flashes are when the upper body suddenly starts feeling warm to the extent of discomfort. Some women might even experience heavy sweating as the hot flashes come to an end. Night sweats are a form of hot flashes too. There are other symptoms as well like the body starts to become flush. With that, many women experience chilling sensations due to sweating at the end of an episode.

Often women who have hot flashes feel their heart beating faster, along with the feeling of anxiety. The frequency varies from individual to individual. The period for which hot flashes last is usually a maximum of five minutes.

ConditionDuration of hot flash
Women who experience hot flashes during the normal menstrual cycle before menopauseEight to ten Years
Women who experience hot flashes towards the onset of menopauseThree to four years

Why Do Hot Flashes Last That Long?

Women start experiencing menopause after having no menstrual cycle for about a year. That marks the start of menopause, and with that, even hot flashes start happening from time to time. There is no fixed time of duration for a single episode of hot flashes.

Obesity is another factor that will determine the duration of the hot flashes that a woman will experience. Hot flashes can go on for years as menopause lasts for sometimes over a decade.

There may be various reasons why hot flashes last that long, and they are as follows:

  • Mainly hormonal changes are what determine the length of a hot flash. As every woman’s hormones are different, so is the duration of the hot flashes.
  • The other reason is the physical condition of a woman. Women who are obese might experience longer hot flashes that may be more frequent. While women who are comparatively fit might experience less frequent hot flashes.
  • The ethnicity of a woman also determines the length and the duration of the hot flashes.
  • Smoking, stress, or depression are other aspects that will determine how long the hot flashes will last.
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Some women are known to have hot flashes for their entire life after menopause. Although, the numbers for that are low.

Conclusion

Once a woman’s child-bearing phase goes away, it gets replaced by menopause. Menopause brings a lot more changes than just the end of the monthly menstrual cycle. Once menopause starts, the women begin to experience a lot of change both, physical and emotional.

There are a few treatments that can lower down the effects of menopause. However, it can not put an end to it. Women can try therapy or even basic things like meditation to keep control of the hot flashes.

References

  1. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/ajhb.1077
  2. https://europepmc.org/article/med/8008318
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