Many women who come into the hormone clinic say they experience hot flashes and night sweats and ask me what causes them. Here is what I tell them...
When estrogen drops too low, the brain realizes estrogen is no longer high enough to protect the body and do its job of regulating all processes, so the adrenal gland kicks in to increase cortisol secretion to excess for added support.
This excess cortisol is enough to cause instability of the blood pressure, appearing as vacillating hypertension, both systolic and diastolic.
The diastolic pressure becomes less increased than the systolic, resulting in larger pulse pressure, then resulting in a visceral response creating a hot flash. (Night sweats are hot flashes that take place when you sleep.)
Hot flashes are present only when estrogen falls too low and go away for most women once estrogen has been fully restored. And you will not get another hot flash or night sweat as long as estrogen remains in a state of optimal homeostasis.
Estrogen is responsible for regulating everything in the female body including blood pressure, body temperature, and fluid balance. When there isn't enough of it, your body will respond in a negative way causing it to malfunction and decline.
Hot flashes are one of the clinical indicators of estrogen deficiency we measure in the hormone clinic to see if your hormones are balanced. As long as your estrogen levels remain in optimal blood serum ranges, hot flashes and night sweats do not exist. The absence of hot flashes is one of the ways we know hormones are balanced.
If you are getting hot flashes, whether you are on hormone therapy or not, then your hormones are not properly balanced. Women whose hormones are balanced in the Hormone Sweet Spot™ do not experience hot flashes.
Freedman RR. Physiology of hot flashes. Am J Hum Biol. 2001 Jul-Aug;13(4):453-64.
If you are experiencing hot flashes and night sweats, whether you are on hormone therapy or not, then chances are your hormones are not balanced. You have control whether you experience hot flashes I am happy to help you never get another hot flash again with my Balance Your Hormones Program.