Sweating at night when asleep is common among sleepers of all ages. Often, we associate sweating with being rather hot. And especially at night, the more often your warm body temperatures wake you up, the more disturbed your sleep is. Not only does a lack of proper sleep cause tiredness the next morning, but it can also have devastating effects on overall health. According to researchers at Harvard University, lack of sleep can cause decreased memory function, unhealthy weight gain, slower metabolism, and reduce immune functionality. Furthermore, being tired can cause hazardous situations throughout the day. For example, driving while exhausted can cause people to make mistakes that otherwise wouldn’t occur.
If you’re like I was, you wake up in the middle of the night sweating bucketloads, tossing and turning, and then fall back asleep. A few hours later, you’re waking up and repeating the cycle all over again. If that sounds familiar, you are part of a small and uncomfortable club. You and I, and all the other sleepers make up a small group of people who say they are sweating too often to get adequate sleep. It’s time to understand what causes night sweats for men and women both and identify if it’s something you may be causing yourself.
Causes Of Night Sweats
Overheating and excessive sweating can happen for a myriad of reasons. Making a few lifestyle changes can help alleviate night sweats, albeit this phenomenon may occur because of limiting medical conditions.
Night sweats can have a negative impact on both men and women, impacting health. Sleeping with a cooling gel pillow or a memory foam cooling pillow can help improve sleep. Also, making adjustments in lifestyle habits, eating a healthful diet, exercising, and taking medication can alleviate night sweating.
If you are struggling with obesity, suffering from anxiety, or experience other ailments, realize that related metabolic disorders can contribute to sleep deprivation. If you are living with little to no sleep frequently, it can lead to an increased risk of heart disease, and trigger other health problems. However, before we discuss medical conditions, here are a few non-medical reasons which hopefully can be resolved much easier:
- You enjoy eating spicy foods often, and right before bedtime. This will cause sweating at night.
- The weather is hotter, contributing to a warmer room and bed. Consider buying a bed cooling system aka bed fan.
- You are wearing too much clothes/pyjama’s/underwear. Try reducing layers, changing the material of your pj’s, or sleep naked.
- You need to increase your water intake.
- You have a mattress that is holding heat. Consider buying a specialist mattress for hot sleepers.
Depending on what factors are impacting your sleep, you can take proactive steps to reduce their significance. Turn down the heat by choosing to sleep on a cool pillow, turning on a fan, or modifying specific behaviors before going to bed. Maybe there’s some truth to eating spicy foods right before going to bed?
- You may suffer from Hyperhidrosis
- Menopause and hot flashes
- Sleep disorders such as Narcolepsy and Sleep Apnea
- Restless limbs
- Circadian disruption
- Hormonal imbalances
- Some neurologic conditions
- Infections such as Tuberculosis and Endocarditis
The numerous above conditions are indeed not the only contributing factors to night sweats and difficulty in getting restful sleep, though they are the most common. We can often control the non-medical reasons for sweating at night by fostering a more comfortable and welcoming sleep environment, and aide with regulating body temperature and hydrating properly. Simple lifestyle changes could be the key.
However, if you don’t identify any of the non-medical reasons as your causes, it could quite easily be a medical issue, which could be less controllable. In which case we would recommend you to seek professional advice from your GP.