It’s no fun to spend the night tossing and turning, only to wake up to damp sheets and sticky pajamas. If you find yourself sweating at night for reasons you can’t immediately explain, rest assured that you’re not alone. Many people complain that “night sweats,” or experiences of excessive sweating during sleep, disrupt their ability to get a good night’s rest. Night sweats can be caused by many different factors, including the affected person’s lifestyle, stress levels, and medical conditions.
For those who suffer from night sweats, figuring out comfortable sleeping conditions can be frustrating. Maybe you’ve already tried changing your mattress, bedclothes, or pillows to alter your body temperature. Perhaps you’ve begun researching where to shop for women’s pajama tops online, but don’t know quite what to look for to fix the problem. Fear not—help is on the way. This article will give you an in-depth look at some causes of night sweats, what more you can do to counteract them, and how to choose the right cooling sleepwear.
What Causes Night Sweats?
If your bedroom is too warm, your sheets are too thick, or your pajamas aren’t breathable enough, you will naturally sweat while you sleep. This is normal and can usually be fixed by finding ways to cool down your sleep environment. True night sweats, meanwhile, aren’t related to overheated sleeping conditions and generally won’t respond to these environmental changes.
As previously mentioned, night sweats can be influenced by anything from your everyday lifestyle choices to more serious medical issues. Below are just a few common reasons people may experience night sweats, as well as some pointers on what to do about them.
When you’re feeling especially stressed out, the quality of your sleeping is also likely to take a dive. Stress and anxiety tend to overstimulate both the brain and the body, which can lead to insomnia, fitful sleep, and—you guessed it—excessive sweating.
Experts recommend you pay particular attention to your sleep hygiene as part of self-care during especially stressful periods. Wind down before bed by taking a warm shower, reducing your screen time, or engaging in calming activities like reading, journaling, or meditation. Also make sure your immediate environment promotes relaxation by turning down the lights, reducing noise, and keeping the room cool.
If you find yourself suffering from recurrent or long-term anxiety, however, it may be a sign of more severe psychological issues. In these cases, don’t be afraid to seek an official diagnosis and more focused treatment from a mental health professional.
Night sweats may also be a side effect of certain kinds of medication that influence your sweat glands or the parts of your brain that moderate your body temperature. Some types of medication that have been noted to induce night sweats include antiretroviral drugs and antidepressants, as well as medications for hormone therapy, hyperglycemia, and hypertension.
If you suspect that your night sweats can be traced back to a particular drug you’re taking for a different health condition, have this validated by your doctor. In many cases, they may be able to replace the drug with an alternative that won’t trigger these symptoms.
Hot flashes are a common and well-documented symptom of menopause. In conjunction with this, most menopausal and perimenopausal women also experience night sweats. According to doctors, these symptoms are likely to be at their most frequent in the first few years immediately following methods and then peter off over time.
To reduce menopausal night sweats, try the following:
- Avoid sweating triggers like spicy food, alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine.
- Keep your bedroom cool. Use breathable, lightweight bedding and sleepwear.
- If night sweats disrupt your sleep, cool down by drinking a glass of water or wiping your face and forehead with a damp towel.
- Monitor your mental health and take extra steps to keep your stress levels low during this period.
If the above home remedies don’t adequately mitigate your night sweats, consider asking your doctor to prescribe you appropriate medication to address the problem.
Underlying Medical Issues
In some cases, you may experience night sweats as a result of certain conditions or diseases, some of which may potentially be severe. Some of these conditions include:
- Heart disease
- Autoimmune disorders
- Clinical depression
- Serious viral or bacterial infections
- Sleep disorders
If you find yourself sweating excessively every night, and particularly if these episodes are accompanied by other symptoms like fevers or sudden weight loss, talk to a doctor. They’ll review your medical history in detail and order tests to accurately pinpoint the source of the problem. From there, they’ll be in the best position to advise you about how to treat and manage the underlying conditions that are actually responsible for your night sweats.
Choosing the Right Cooling Sleepwear
Whatever the cause of your night sweats might be, good sleepwear can help you stay comfortable and get the rest you need. Instead of rolling into bed in whatever old T-shirt you can fish out of your closet, invest in pajamas that are specifically made of light, breathable materials like silk and bamboo. Sleepwear made from these fabrics not only feels great against your skin but also often boasts potent cooling and moisture-wicking properties that will help relieve night sweats. In contrast, avoid pajamas made of materials like wool, flannel, or polyester, which all tend to retain heat.
It’s likewise important to pay attention to the size and cut of your sleepwear. For maximum comfort, prioritize looser, roomier garments over close-fitting ones. These will create more airflow around you as you sleep and help disperse your body heat more efficiently, making it easier to keep cool through the night. If your skin is easily irritated, you may also want to steer clear of pajamas with tags, buttons, or snap closures.
As for style, you have your pick of nightgowns, matching sets of tops and shorts, or long pants. In many cases, people who experience night sweats may benefit from prioritizing shorts or nightgowns, as there’s less fabric to cling to their bodies and trap heat. Those who are most comfortable with pants, however, don’t have to rule them out. You’ll just have to pay extra-special attention to size and material. Look for lightweight pajama pants that incorporate moisture-wicking technology, and get them oversized for best results.
Night sweats can disrupt your sleep and take a real toll on your focus, mood, and general sense of well-being, but they don’t have to. You can manage them effectively with the right sleepwear, a conducive sleeping environment, and appropriate advice from a health professional where necessary. Once you start addressing the problem proactively, you’ll be just a step away from getting the beauty rest you deserve.
Iskra Banović is our seasoned Editor-in-Chief at BlueFashion. She has been steering the website’s content and editorial direction since 2013. With a rich background in fashion design, Iskra’s expertise spans across fashion, interior design, beauty, lifestyle, travel, and culture.