Are cold flashes even a thing? Is Sam doing menopause wrong?

Ice of Lake Michigan. Photo by Tom Barrett,
We all blog about menopause around here. Okay, not all of us. Some of the bloggers are young. But almost all of us have written about menopause.

One distinguishing feature of menopause is the hot flash. Hearing about it, I thought, how bad could it be? You’re too warm. Just throw off the blankets and open a window. But it’s not like that. It’s like you’re on fire from the inside out and nothing you can do changes the temperature you’re experiencing. It’s awful.

I’m through the hot flashes. And I haven’t really had any other menopause symptoms. But lately I’ve been getting cold flashes, chills, that feel like the hot flashes.

Nothing I can do makes them go away. I put on warm jammies. I bundle under all the blankets. But no effect. It starts when I’m tired. That’s the real cause I suspect. When I wake up in the morning I’m toasty warm. All those blankets!

I’ve wondered if it’s a menopause thing. Or I am doing menopause wrong? It turns out they definitely are a thing. See this LiveStrong article on menopause and cold flashes. It could also be a thyroid problem (check) or low blood sugar (check) or a caloric deficit (check).

“A cold flash, often called the chills, is a sudden feeling of intense cold, usually accompanied with shivering. The difference between cold and shivering as a reaction to weather as opposed to a medical condition is the unexpected situation in which it happens. The brain monitors and regulates the body’s temperature, according to the University of Illinois Medical Center, and when something throws it off balance, such as menopause, chemicals will travel through the bloodstream, causing the brain to raise the normal temperature set point. This causes you to feel cold and shiver to help your body’s temperature rise to meet the new set point.”

Do you get “cold flashes” or the chills? Any suggestions for getting warm?