Are you sweating more than usual after giving birth? Are you waking up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat? It’s postpartum hot flashes. It’s a challenging post-birth complication for some women to deal with, but don’t fret because it is not anything out of the ordinary. Just about every woman experiences hot flashes during her postpartum period regardless of where she is in her postpartum recovery.
What are Postpartum Hot Flashes?
Hot flashes are characterized by sweating for no apparent reason when the environmental temperature isn’t particularly warm. They often occur when one gets cozy under the covers, usually in the middle of the night.
Hot flashes occur in up to 80% of postpartum women. These are night sweats that are common in women who have had a baby within the last 6 months but can also happen 6-12 months after birth to women who are breastfeeding.
Postpartum hot flashes are similar to hot flashes caused by menopause. Hot flashes can last for months or even years post-birth, whereas postmenopausal hot flashes can occur for 5-10 years post-menopause.
- Fluctuating body temperature, most often causes a person to feel cold throughout the day
- Extremely red or flushed face
- Feeling faint or dizzy
- Rapid heartbeat
- Heavy perspiration post-birth
- Uterus pain caused by breastfeeding (can also be caused by clogged milk ducts or anemia)
How can you tell if you are experiencing postpartum night sweats?
One way to tell is sleeping at least 4 hours post-birth without waking up soaked in and changing clothes/pajamas.
Postpartum hot flashes can be caused by a variety of reasons, most commonly;
- Post-birth hormones and breastfeeding: Hot flashes can be caused by post-birth hormones and the body’s attempt to adjust postpartum. Also, breastfeeding causes postpartum night sweats because it stimulates your core temperature, meaning the more you feed at night, the warmer you will feel.
- Post-birth stress and anxiety: Stress hormones tend to peak post-birth, causing a hormone imbalance in the body which is very common during night sweats. Post-birth stress can also lead to postpartum sleep regressions where the baby won’t sleep more than 4 hours at a time for weeks after birth due to hormonal changes from post-birth stress that need time to balance out—this can last up until 3 months postpartum.
- Sudden postpartum diet changes: Postpartum hot flashes can also be caused by sudden post-birth dietary changes. For example, postpartum night sweats can be triggered from a post-birth vegan/vegetarian diet change because of the lack of animal protein—a new mom’s body needs all the help it can get to recover post-birth, meaning it needs an animal protein to help boost postpartum hormones.
- Postpartum depression: Hot flashes are also caused by postpartum depression which can send stress signals of fear or anxiety that can lead to postpartum night sweats/hot flashes post-birth. It is very important to keep an eye out postpartum for postpartum depression symptoms because postpartum depression can also lead to postpartum self-harm.
Postpartum Hot Flashes Solution and Relief
- When hot flashes symptoms are from post-birth dietary changes, the best thing a new mommy can do is limit sudden post-birth diet changes that could inhibit healthy postnatal weight loss and give postpartum post-birth dietary changes time to balance out postpartum.
- The best way to relieve postpartum night sweats is through a cooling pillow spray. This spray works with your body’s natural temperature regulation properties. The cooling postpartum spray works to cool your post-birth hot postpartum flashes quickly and effectively, allowing you to get a night’s sleep.
- If postpartum night sweats are accompanied by post-birth anxiety or post-birth depression, it is best to consult a postpartum specialist or other women who have post-birth postpartum night sweats.
- Postpartum night sweats are 100% normal during post-birth because the body is trying to regulate your post-birth hormones after giving birth. However, if postpartum night sweats last for longer than 4 postpartum weeks post-birth, consult a postpartum specialist for postnatal postpartum night sweats.
Home Remedies for Postpartum Hot Flashes:
Home remedies for postpartum hot flashes post-birth can include postpartum postnatal remedies such as;
- Chilly showers: remedy for postpartum night sweats is to take chilly showers to cool your post-birth body down and help relieve hot flashes.
- Cold compresses: place cold compresses on your forehead and neck to help cool your body down to relieve hot flashes.
- Fanning yourself: use a fan to circulate cool air around you to help relieve.
- Wearing light clothing: wear light clothing made from natural fibers to help your body breathe and circulate air around you.
- Intakes: vitamin B6, flaxseed oil and water intake, chamomile tea.
If postpartum night sweats post-birth are accompanied by postpartum anxiety or postnatal depression, it is best to consult a postpartum specialist for postnatal hot flashes relief.
Postpartum hot flashes are 100% normal during post-birth because the post-birth body is trying to regulate postnatal hormones.
If you are experiencing hot flashes, there are several things that you can do to find relief. Talk to your doctor about the best solution for you, and try some of the home remedies we’ve suggested.
Most importantly, don’t suffer in silence – tell your friends and family what you’re going through so they can support you. However, if postpartum night sweats last for longer than 4 weeks post-birth, consult a postpartum specialist for postnatal hot flashes relief.
Hot flashes are a common side effect of childbirth, but that doesn’t mean that you have to deal with them on your own.
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