Do you ever find yourself feeling intensely hot and suddenly dripping with sweat? Hot flashes and night sweats (also known as vasomotor symptoms or VMS) are common complaints, reported as problematic by up to 75% of perimenopausal women in the United States.
Because night sweats can occur for multiple reasons, remedies run the gamut from natural to chemical and everything in between.
What are the best natural remedies for night sweats? Today we’ll talk about ten night sweat relief treatments to provide a better sleep experience and improve your overall quality of life:
- Wear moisture-wicking pajamas and loungewear
- Increase your daily exercise
- Eat and drink healthier
- Avoid food or drink triggers
- Monitor your alcohol intake
- Turn the thermostat down
- Update your bedding
- Try mind-body therapies
- Consider taking herbal supplements
- Reduce or stop smoking
Wear Moisture-Wicking Pajamas and Loungewear
What’s worse than waking up in the middle of the night in a puddle of your own sweat? Finding comfortable sleepwear is paramount if you're battling night sweats.
Moisture-wicking pajamas and loungewear help absorb moisture from your skin, keeping you cool and dry. Wear light layers, like bed jackets or button-downs if you need to add or remove clothing through the night.
Increase Your Daily Exercise
Exercise helps reduce stress and anxiety, common triggers for night sweats. In addition, improved well-being can have an overall positive impact on menopause symptoms.
Improving cardiovascular health can help maintain a healthy weight, balance hormones, and regulate your body temperature, enabling you to sleep more soundly. Studies show that even light to moderate exercise (like walking or yoga) can be beneficial in alleviating menopause symptoms, including night sweats.
However, avoid exercising right before you go to bed. Instead, give yourself plenty of time for your body to cool down after working out, at least one hour to ninety minutes before bedtime.
Eat and Drink Healthier
Being healthy on the inside is just as important as daily exercise. What you eat and drink can directly reflect how you feel. For example, if you constantly feel hot at night, consider eating more high-water content foods to reduce heat and toxins. And, of course, drink plenty of water!
Cooling, water-dense food choices include:
Avoid Food or Drink Triggers
In addition to adding cooling foods to your diet, keep a diary of what you eat and drink to understand better what triggers your night sweats. While everyone responds to foods differently, typical heat-producing food and drink triggers include:
- Hot beverages
- Caffeinated drinks like coffee and tea
- Processed, fatty or spicy foods
- Onions and garlic
- Foods containing histamines (like processed or smoked meats and aged cheeses).
Monitor Your Alcohol Intake
Having your nightly glass of red wine may do you more harm than good. While alcohol can make you feel drowsy at first, drinking alcohol even moderately can disrupt your sleep cycle, impacting your sleep quality significantly.
Alcohol speeds up your heart rate and causes blood vessels to expand, increasing blood flow and making your skin feel warm. This induces a sweat response to cool you down. In addition, you may sweat more to eliminate alcohol from your liver, which treats alcohol as a toxin.
Consider limiting (or eliminating) alcohol for a month and see how it makes you feel. You may find that getting a better night’s rest is preferable to dragging through the next day.
Turn the Thermostat Down
Ever notice that it’s easier to sleep in the winter than in the dog days of summer? According to the Sleep Foundation, the best bedroom temperature for sleep is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. So keeping your bedroom cool and well-ventilated may help signal your body that it’s time to sleep.
Update Your Bedding
Swap your current bedding for a cooling mattress topper, cooling blankets and pillows. Here are some resources for options to try:
Try Mind-Body Therapies
Are you burning the candle at both ends and then wondering why you can’t sleep at night? Winding down in the evening helps prepare your mind and body for a comfortable sleep.
Stress reduction techniques like meditation, yoga and acupuncture have relieved some women from persistent night sweats and hot flashes. YouTube is an excellent resource for meditation and yoga instruction, or check for classes in your area.
Additionally, maintaining a good daily routine, prioritizing stress management, and taking frequent breaks help keep you on an even keel. For example, to unwind at night, try taking a warm bath, reading or listening to calming music instead of endlessly scrolling through social media.
Consider Taking Herbal Supplements
Some herbal supplements (taken in capsules or teas) have been traditionally used to help alleviate menopausal symptoms, including night sweats.
Some herbal supplements include:
- Black cohosh
- Red clover
- Evening primrose oil
- Dong quai
- Milk thistle
Important: Check with your doctor before taking these herbal remedies. Some may have unexpected side effects (including liver damage) or be contraindicated with other drugs like blood thinners.
Reduce or Stop Smoking
Did you know women who smoke can begin menopause one to two years earlier than non-smokers? In addition, women who smoke are more likely than non-smokers to experience night sweats and hot flashes. Since nicotine is a stimulant, it can increase your heart rate and blood pressure, triggering night sweats.
Smoking’s adverse effects on your overall health (including an increased risk of cardiovascular and respiratory disease) cannot be overstated. If you want to quit smoking, speak with a healthcare professional about effective methods and support systems to help you.
Other Reasons You May Have Night Sweats
Common conditions that contribute to night sweats include:
- Certain medications
- Hot, humid weather
- Hyperhidrosis (chronic sweating)
- Medical conditions, including cancer, hypoglycemia, hormone disorders and infections
While the natural remedies we discussed today may help reduce night sweats, contact your physician if you experience severe or persistent night sweats or have other symptoms like fever, fatigue or weight loss.
Stay Cool and Comfy All Night With Softies PJs
Many new temperature-regulating technologies and remedies help us stay cool and moisture-free, especially from night sweats. However, remember that these remedies' effectiveness varies depending on certain conditions and various body types.
Softies’ moisture-wicking sleepwear and loungewear help keep you comfortable around the clock. Our Wellness Fabric sleepwear collection features patented drirelease® technology that wicks away moisture and neutralizes odors, keeping you smelling fresh.
Softies’ sleepwear is exceptionally soft, comfortable and lightweight, so you’ll always get a good night’s rest.
Experience the Softies difference and try one of our moisture-wicking pajamas today.