What does it mean when you wake up sweating? Sweating at night is an extremely common sleep issue for both women and men that could mean a host of different things - some harmless and some serious. Before you get too worried about why you’re sweating in bed, start by ruling out a few things, then talk to your health care provider.
Is your sleep environment causing excessive sweating at night?
First, take a full inventory of all aspects of your sleep environment. True night sweating - known as sleep hyperhidrosis - occurs independently of environmental factors. It’s persistent, drenches clothing and bedding, and is not caused by anything you’re in contact with while you sleep. Here are some questions to ask about your sleep environment – one or several of these things may be causing you to overheat and sweat while you’re trying to get your Zz’s.
- What’s your home or bedroom thermostat set to? As recommended by the National Sleep Foundation, the recommended temperature for sleeping is between 60-67 degrees F. Your bedroom should emulate the environment of a cave – cool, quiet and dark.
- Do you have a foam mattress? Memory foam retains more body heat than other mattress materials – it’s one of the top complaints from memory foam mattress users.
- Are you using a mattress topper or pad? Mattress toppers, such as popular “egg crate” mattress toppers, memory foam mattress toppers and even “cooling gel mattress pads” – might contain materials retain heat and cause hot sleep.
- Is your sleepwear breathable enough? If your pajamas are flannel or wool, or if you’re wearing too many layers, you could be causing yourself to sleep hot. Consider less or layers and less clothing, and stick to lightweight cotton or bamboo cotton for cooler, comfortable sleep.
- Do you sleep with a partner whose body heat is affecting your sleep temp? Your partner’s body heat while they’re sleeping is certainly something to consider when looking at your own temperature-related sleep problems. If your partner sleeps hot, you’re likely to be sleeping hotter as a result.
- Is the underside of your bed breathable? The foundation or base of your bed is often overlooked as a reason for hot sleep. A base that allows great air circulation, such as a frame with slats or an adjustable base, is ideal for air flow.
Many of the above environmental factors - such as changing pajamas or adjusting your home or bedroom thermostat - can be easily changed. The BedJet Climate Comfort System for beds is also a great solution for the bedroom temperature issue as well as the issue of your partner sleeping hot. If you can’t agree with your partner on a comfortable thermostat setting in your bedroom, you can use the BedJet Dual Zone Cloud Sheet to customize cooling/warming temperatures on one partner’s side of the bed without affecting the partner’s other side.
If you’ve ruled out the above environmental factors as the culprit of your temperature-related sleep issues and determined that you’re experiencing true night sweats, below is a list of possible causes. You should absolutely talk to your healthcare provider right away if you feel any of these medical issues might be affecting you.
Possible Causes of Night Sweats
- Many common types of medications can lead to night sweats.
- Aspirin / Acetaminophen
- Reportedly, 8-22% of people taking antidepressant drugs have night sweats. Other psychiatric drugs have also been associated with night sweats.
- Many other types. If you’re taking a prescription medication and experiencing night sweats, bring this us up with your healthcare provider.
- Hormone disorders such as hyperthyroidism, pheochromocytoma or Carcinoid syndrome.
- Perimenopause / Menopause. This is an extremely common cause of night sweats in women. The hot flashes that accompany perimenopause can occur at night and cause sweating.
- Hypoglycemia / Low blood sugar may cause sweating. If you’re taking insulin or oral diabetes medications, hypoglycemia at night that can be accompanied by sweating.
- Neurologic conditions. Conditions might include Autonomic dysreflexia, syringomyelia, stroke, and autonomic neuropathy.
- Bacterial / Viral Infection. Tuberculosis is the infection most commonly associated with night sweats. But bacterial infections, such as endocarditis (inflammation of the heart valves), osteomyelitis, and abscesses can cause night sweats. Night sweats are also a symptom of HIV infection.
- Idiopathic Hyperhidrosis, also known as polyhidrosis or sudorrhea, is a condition characterized by excessive sweating that be focal (just one specific area) or generalized, involving the whole body. If focal, most commonly the feet, armpits, hands or face are affected.
- Cancers. Night sweats are an early symptom of some cancers, such as lymphoma. But note that people who have undiagnosed cancers frequently have other symptoms as well, such as unexplained weight loss and fevers. If your night sweats occur due to cancer, you'll likely experience other symptoms. Night sweats also occur due to cancer treatments such as chemotherapy, drugs that alter hormones, and morphine.
How to Stop Night Sweats
If you suspect any of the possible causes of night sweats listed above are affecting you, you should make an appointment to see your healthcare provider immediately to diagnose the issue and discuss a course of action. Your doctor will likely order a series of tests to determine the cause.
Regardless of what the root cause of your night sweats are, you can use BedJet for relief and get back to the sleep you deserve. BedJet is the first clinically proven device to relieve night sweats and hot flashes in perimenopausal women, and it’s used by many people throughout the United States who are dealing with the medical issues listed above.
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