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"What could be causing my hot flashes?"
22 year old female here and I've starting getting hot flashes. Like I'll just be sitting at home or at work and feel feverish and hot all of the sudden. I though only older women got these. What's going on?
In older women, hot flashes are usually a sign of insufficient or fluctuating hormone levels as one goes into menopause. Obviously, this is less likely to be the cause in someone your age! A more common cause that would need to be ruled out is a problem with the thyroid gland. When the thyroid gland becomes over active, this can provoke many symptoms, including hot flashes, sweating, nervousness, weight loss, changes in the skin or hair, and palpitations. Hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid gland, can occur in people of any age. Your doctor can rule out a problem with the thyroid gland be performing a physical examination and some simple blood tests. If you have any other symptoms other than those above, you should also mention those to your doctor. For example, if you have recently started to have irregular periods, this might be a sign of premature changes in the hormones produced by the ovaries that might mimic menopause. Although pretty unusual in someone your age, this would be the other thing to rule out. Start by a complete physical examination with your primary care doctor. If any concerning findings are uncovered, they will help you decide what treatments are necessary.
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