Menopause is often defined as the end of the last menstrual period, often occurring at around 53 years of age, symptoms such as hot flushes and night sweats last on average around 4 years but in some women they may last as long as 12 years or even longer.
* Uncomfortable symptoms are due to changes in hormonal levels particularly during pre menopause and menopause, in particular the decline in oestrogen levels.
* After menopause most oestrogen produced comes from the conversion of adrenal androgens and this will occur in the liver, kidney, brain and fatty tissues, only small amounts of oestradiol are secreted by the ovary.
* Thirty to seventy percent of women will experience vasomotor symptoms such as hot flushes and night sweats,
* Other symptoms may include tiredness due to poor sleeping patterns; mood swings, and forgetfulness.
* Conventional treatment for menopause is hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
* HRT has been linked to certain cancers mainly endometrial, it may also be a risk factor for breast cancer, in this case due to long term use of HRT
* In some overseas countries the use of HRT is restricted to short-term treatment of this condition.
How does Acupuncture work for hot flushes and night sweats?
Acupuncture can reduce these uncomfortable symptoms, and some studies have suggested acupuncture is equally as good as HRT.
* Acupuncture is thought to regulate serum oestradiol, and hormones in the body such as; follicle stimulating hormone, and leuteotrophic hormone.
* By stimulating nerves located in muscles there is also a release of endorphins which increase relaxation and reduce tension in the body, which may reduce the other symptoms of menopause.
Don’t put up with night sweats and hot flushes!
If hot flushes and night sweats are making your life a misery, acupuncture alone, or a combination of acupuncture and patent herbal treatment can give good long lasting results. I would suggest weekly treatments for a short period, then monthly maintenance visits once symptoms have reduced.