Menopause Mondays: Dry Babe, The Night Sweats Nemesis
You’re in menopause. Not only do you have hot flashes, unfamiliar aches and pains, and the newfound tendency to frequent the elastic waistband section, but you’re consistently waking up in a pool of sweat! Will this ever end? Wendy Collett, the maker of Dry Babe Sleepwear (which I am excited to say we now sell here on EllenDolgen.com), says yes! Her wicking pajama line has nightgowns, robes and pajama sets. Some say progesterone could help menopause symptoms like night sweats – Wendy says she’s got a natural hero. Made of special fibers to defeat your perspiration, you may find yourself surprised that a mask and cape aren’t included!
Night Sweats Are Nothing to Lose Sleep Over
Oh yeah, really? If night sweats are nothing to lose sleep over, why do millions of women across the United States and around the world wake up wet, cold, and clammy night after a long night?
Like so much else about our health and well-being, it comes down to hormones. Our mothers used to say, “You are what you eat.” From my experience in perimenopause, I have amended that to “you are what your hormones say you are,” and they are VERY BOSSY! Having mood swings? I’ll bet it is your hormones. Libido sluggish? Hormones again. Having night sweats? Hormones. See what I mean? They are very bossy and controlling .
Ellen Dolgen and her magnificently resourceful book, Shmirshky: the pursuit of hormone happiness and EllenDolgen.com give us great information on how to tame those hormones. As the resident night sweat expert, I am going to tell you about my journey from cold and clammy sleepless nights to a dry, peaceful and restorative full night’s sleep.
What’s In a Night Sweat?
While the scientific name is “nocturnal hydrosis,” I prefer the more descriptive term – night sweats. Night sweats and their evil twin, the hot flash, are often caused by decreased hormone levels often associated with perimenopause and menopause. However, night sweats and hot flashes can be caused by many medical conditions, including breast cancer, obesity, diabetes, etc., and certain prescription medications, including sleep aids and anti-depressants.
The moment I turned 40, the nighttime water works started. Baffled, I had no idea why I was having night sweats. After many visits to various physicians, during which a lot of scary diseases were ruled out, the truth became evident: I was squarely in perimenopause.
Perimenopause? What the heck is perimenopause? I had not even heard the word perimenopause used in polite conversation.
Perimenopause marks the interval in which the female body begins its transition into menopause and encompasses the years leading up to menopause, anywhere from two to eight years, plus the first year after a woman’s final period. It is a natural part of aging that signals the ending of the reproductive years. Generally, perimenopause begins sometime in the 40s, although some women notice changes as early as their mid-30s. As women go through the menopausal transition, the body’s production of estrogen and progesterone fluctuates. These hormonal fluctuations are at the root of the changes the body goes through during perimenopause.
Perimenopause can be quite cunning. It causes some subtle — and some not-so-subtle — changes in the body, including menstrual irregularity, hot flashes, night sweats, erratic sleep, and mood changes. These changes are not exactly designed to enhance your sensuality or boost your love life, especially the night sweats.
How I Became a Dry Babe
For a long time, I would wake up at least once during the night soaking wet. I had to get out of bed, towel off, change clothes and then try to get back to sleep. Sometimes, hours later, there would be a repeat performance. Often, I would attempt to prod my husband to move over a bit to avoid sleeping in the “wet spot.” And the nights of interrupted sleep wore on and on.
At some point, I had the ingenious idea to sleep with a hand towel across my chest, between my skin and PJs. This worked wonders and I was now getting uninterrupted sleep. However, one July morning, I woke up before my husband. He looked so peaceful and handsome. I then looked down and noticed the hand towel bursting out from the top of my night gown. This look was anything but cute. I became incensed that there was no better solution – either sleep with a towel or wake up during the night wet. Not exactly Sophie’s Choice, but it riled me enough to go find a solution.
I got out of bed with a gleam of determination in my eye, fired up my laptop and got to work researching fabrics. I had already spent the last three years trying every lotion, potion and garment for night sweats. Since the best solution so far had been the towel, I decided that I needed to start with fabrics that absorb. This was a good plan because absorbent fabrics tend to be made from cotton and other natural materials. I find polyester scratchy and uncomfortable, and besides, it traps heat. I bought small quantities of all the different types of cotton and high cotton content blends and tested them one per night for absorbency, comfort and softness. After a while, I found the ultimate fabric that kept me dry and comfortable and tested it further by having a nightgown made up in the fabric. It was important to me that the gown not only do its job (absorb moisture) but had to also be something that looked good on the body and felt good to the touch. No great-granny-looking nightgowns need apply.
I had high hopes and some trepidation when I wore the night gown for the first time. Will it do its job? Will it be comfortable? Will it allow me to sleep through the night? Turns out, the answer to all three questions was a big, resounding YES! Eureka and hallelujah! Sleep salvation can be found in sleepwear after all.
The saying that life is what happens when you are busy making other plans certainly applies here. After 20 years in the corporate world, I had spent the last two years getting a master’s degree in counseling and was on the verge of starting a new career working with kids. Dry Babe came into being because I felt compelled to share my discovery with all women who are losing sleep to night sweats. It is no secret that sleep is a central component of overall health and well-being and women tend to have more trouble falling and staying asleep. Women need to make sleep a priority to ensure optimal health and happiness. Dry Babe Absorbent Sleepwear for “Hot” Mamas helps to make Sleeping Beauties out of all of us.
If you’re in perimenopause and menopause or you sleep with someone who is, you’re aware that waking up feeling like you’ve just taken a swim is not a fun thing. Wendy’s amazing sleepwear is not only absorbent, it’s fashionable! I am proud and excited to be selling Dry Babe sleepwear. With our code, shmirshky15, you can get 15% off your purchase and be a Dry Babe yourself!
Never fear! Dry Babe is here!