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Monday, February 17, 2014

Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot

One of the latest non-motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease I have been experiencing are hot flashes. They start with my face or neck and spread downward. Thankfully, they only last a minute or two, so I don't end up drenched in sweat like some other Parkies I know. When I am with friends and take my jacket off, then put it back on again, then take it off, and put it on again (sometimes within twenty minutes and when the temperature is actually cold), I use my sense of humor and just say, "Guess I'm still a Hot Mama!"


YumaBev as a Hot Mama

I have them multiple times during the day, but I always having one as soon as I lie down to go to sleep. It doesn't matter whether I am taking a nap or going to sleep for the night. Within two minutes of becoming prone, the heat starts.

These night time hot flashes are irritating. I kick off the covers, then become chilled, so I pull the covers back up, then I get hot again, then chilled and finally go to sleep. If I get up in the night to go to the bathroom, as soon as I lie down again, another one happens. Hot, cold, hot, cold. It's a wonder I get any sleep at all (and I feel sorry for my Wonderful Husband who sleeps next to me.)

The autonomic nervous system (ANS) regulates the functions of our internal organs and controls such things as heart rate, digestion, breathing, salivation, urination, blood pressure, sexual arousal and perspiration. Parkinson's and lack of dopamine affects our ANS and is probably what screws up our internal temperature gauges.



Females have similar hot flashes during menopause, but I went through that several years ago. In my research for this story, I had one gentleman tell me he was going through "MAN-opause," and another fellow wondered why he never gets hot flashes when he's outside shoveling snow and could use the extra warmth?

What can be done about it? Not much, apparently, so I just adapt and try to laugh about it.

9 comments:

  1. I can totally relate to what you are saying. Hot and then cold, several times a night. It's enough to drive one up the wall. Whether it's menopausal or down to PD - who knows. But it sure is irritating!

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  2. Thank you Bev!! I was just wondering the other night why you lay down, get snuggled under the covers, relax, and..wham..you start melting. I wonder what it is about lying down??? Is it a reverse of the problem some people have where when they stand their blood pressure drops?

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  3. I have these hot spells too - especially bad for sleeping. Have had some success with anti-depressants

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  4. Yes i have really bad hot, hot flashes. Started 3 years ago. Its unbleiveable to. Much sweat. Sweat dripping all over my fore head down to my face back of my neck.

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  5. Sounds like me, but I also have osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia too; I bought a heated mattress cover so I don't get too cold. I don't sleep hardly at all for a couple of days and sometimes when I am tired enough I take a nap. PD is surely a very trying thing to live with.

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  6. Thank you for another beautiful and candid blog. It was very interesting to hear your point of view about sweating and PD and to hear what some men have shared with you about sweating and PD. As always, you have an amazing gift to find humor and I feel so blessed that you share it with me, as well as others. Anna @ NPF

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  7. Before I was diagnosed with PD I began to notice one side of my body could feel very cold while the other felt normal. I am now very sensitive to cold and am contentious when choosing what clothing wear. A mild chill can stiffen my neck and shoulders immediately, so when I go outside I wear hoodies, beanies, scarf and dress in layers. My wife said I look like a bugler and the local police have slowed to take a closer look at me when driving by, I just smile and wave to them. On top of that I sweat when I'm cold. PD, go figure.

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  8. Right before I was first diagnosed I also experienced extreme coldness in my arm and hand on my side with symptoms. Now I am always hot. If the thermostat is above 64 I am uncomfortable. I was diagnosed at 29 and am 35 now. If I was having hot flashes I would presume it to be caused by menopause but I'm just always hot. Anybody else have this?

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  9. I don't have Parkinson's but have gone through menopause. I started menopause just before my 47th birthday (I am 57 now). Fortunately I didn't go through the hot flashes. Nice finding your blog and love your humour and outlook.

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