HOT FLASHES!!! HOT FLASHES!!! HOT FLASHES!!!
For those of you who do not know what I’m referring to, a hot flash occurs when a fiery inner furnace inside a typically middle aged woman wakes up from dormancy and shoots hellish heat throughout her torso, flashes upward through her neck and face. You can usually tell when a woman is having a hot flash – her eyes may enlarge in terror or narrow with frustration, bracing at the onset of the torrent of heat; her breathing may quicken and she will undoubtedly be left drenched in sweat, head to toe, from the intense heat. Do you think that’s o.k. in the cold winter months? Wrong! The heat is too intense, too sudden – like being in the path of a blow torch’s flame. A hot flash is unimaginably unnerving and uncomfortable in the heat of the summer. Outer heat intensified by inner heat or vice versa, either way to say it’s intense is an understatement. I need to stress here that it occurs randomly, 24/7. It can happen when you’re at a social event, in a meeting, working out, trying to enjoy of movie – anytime. It can wake you up out of sleep, leaving your bedclothes soaked in sweat, robbing you of replenishing rest. Additional symptoms may include depression, irritability, anger, mood swings, headache, migraine, and vaginal dryness. Does it happen to everyone? No, there are a few lucky women who do not experience this as they go through the “change of life” when hormone production naturally decreases or at the result of surgery such as hysterectomy. But for women who do experience hot flashes, usually the first remedy they are offered is hormone replacement therapy (HRT). There is a lot of controversy regarding synthetic HRT citing the smaller problem of break through bleeding to bigger problems of cancer, heart disease, stroke or blood clots. In severe cases, some women, after consulting their MD, will still opt for HRT. For other women who would rather not, there is still hope! There are Chinese herbs, western herbs and essential oils that can be highly effective, singly or combined. The list includes dong quai, black cohosh, wild yam extract, Vitamin B Complex (or foods high in them), Vitamin E (or sunshine), evening primrose and black currant oil. But I’m here to tell you about essential oils that have worked for many women, and they are in MedEssential Oil’s Clary Cooler blend.
MedEssential Oils’ Clary Cooler blend contains, first and foremost, clary sage. Although I think essential oils generally are one of God’s greatest gifts to us, clary sage is particularly so for women. Estrogen like, it stimulates hormones and is known to relieve hot flashes and headache/migraine. It increases mucous secretion in all uro-genital organs and yet aids leucorrhea, or any inflammation of mucous membranes. It reduces excessive perspiration. Sometimes during menopause women experience hair loss and clary sage helps with that as well. On the emotional front, clary sage aids depression and nervous tension. As Gabriel Mojay states in Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit, “…it calms states of tension yet revive(s) those of fatigue. In terms of Oriental medicine, clary sage oil both strengthens Qi-energy that is depleted, and circulates Qi-energy that is stuck.”
The second essential oil of the formula Clary Cooler is one of the most popular essential oils, lavender. Energetically cooling, lavender is well known for its calming effect. It is regarded as a tonic for depression, mood swings, panic and anger. Additionally, it is used as an aid for headache and migraines.
The third essential oil of Clary Cooler is geranium, which is frequently used in formulations for menopausal symptoms as it stimulates the adrenal cortex which is key in regulating the hormonal system and may help with hormone fluctuations. Energetically, its essence is cool, moist. It is regarded as a neuro balancer, easing nervous tension, nervous exhaustion, frustration, irritability.
The last essential of Clary Cooler is bergamot. A citrus oil, it is intrinsically refreshing and uplifting. Moreover, it eases mood swings, insomnia, depression and pairs well with lavender. It is also reported to have a tonic, strengthening effect on the uterus.
The above formulation, Clary Cooler, works well synergistically to bring about relief from menopausal symptoms and can be a very effective alternative to HRT. I also encourage a combination of the herbal remedies with the essential oils, if necessary. Last but emphatically important, attention to diet will assist greatly in controlling menopausal symptoms. Specifically, white sugar or a heavy sugar load can trigger hot flashes. I’ve had clients who eliminated white sugar and their hot flashes diminished, just with that dietary adjustment. So it helps to delete white sugar plus refined carbohydrates such as white flour from your diet. Focus on (you guessed it) green leafy vegetables, legumes/beans, peas, seeds/nuts.
Clary Cooler can be found at www.medessentialoils.com. A word of caution is that bergamot can cause photosensitivity, producing a rash when exposed to direct sunlight. So do not expose treated skin to direct sunlight for 12 hours after application. Luckily, the suggested application sites are easily shielded from sunlight – lower abdomen and reflexology points on the foot. Additionally, Clary Cooler works extremely well with inhalation and comes in handy discrete inhalers as well as in 5 ml bottles. See website description for full directions.
The statements herein have not been reviewed by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose or treat any disease.
Sheppard-Hangar, The Aromatherapy Practitioner Reference Manual, Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy, 2000
Mojay, Gabriel, Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit, Healing Arts Press, 1997
Price, Shirley and Price, Len, Aromatherapy for Health Professionals, 2nd Edition, Churchill Livingstone, 2003
Battaglia, Salvatore, The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, 2nd Etition, Perfect Potion, 2004