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9 Hidden Reasons You Sweat Heavily

Excessive sweating isn’t considered harmful if there are obvious reasons for it, like hot weather or exercising. In these cases, your body is simply carrying out the natural process of thermoregulation. However, if you find yourself sweating in situations where everyone else isn’t, then you might have some hidden causes of excessive sweating.

At Bright Side we figured out what those reasons are, and if you recognize any of these symptoms, you should consult your doctor.

1. Focal hyperhidrosis

Specialists identified 2 types of excessive sweating — focal and generalized. Focal hyperhidrosis is characterized by the constant sweating of certain body areas, which usually happen in pairs, like the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet, the armpits, and the face. While every person may sweat there, the situation becomes alarming if you often find these parts wet for no obvious reason.

The nature of focal hyperhidrosis is unclear. Studies showed that people who struggle with it have no changes in their sweat glands, nor in the amount of sweat. It was suggested that this condition must be the result of a genetic dysfunction of the nervous system that produces a sweat reaction, when it isn’t necessary. Medical treatment includes electrical stimulation, medications, Botox injections, or surgery.

2. Pregnancy

Pregnancy is another hidden cause of excessive sweating. It’s a perfectly normal condition when you’re expecting, because your body temperature raises and more blood is circulating in your body, which will make you feel hotter than usual. Increased metabolism and hormone shifts are among the other reasons for excessive perspiration.

3. Hyperactive thyroid

This condition means that your thyroid gland has become ‘overactive’ and produces more of the metabolic hormones thyroxine (T4) and tri-iodothyronine (T3) than it should. These chemicals are responsible for keeping your systems working at the right pace. With too many of them, your metabolism speeds up, which can lead to excessive sweating, irregular heartbeat, rapid weight loss, and tremors.

4. Specific diet

Consuming certain food can make you sweat eventually because of its thermogenic effect. This is called a gustatory sweat. Some foods, though, have a stronger impact on your digestion. Make sure you’re not indulging too much in spicy food, caffeine, or alcohol, before you start worrying about excessive sweating.

All the delicious curries contain a chemical called capsaicin that fools your brain into thinking your body temperature is rising. Caffeine and alcohol also stimulate your nervous system and increase your blood pressure.

5. Medications

Although only 1% of people experience excessive perspiration as a side effect of certain medications, this case is still worth being mentioned. According to the International Hyperhidrosis Society painkillers, antibiotics, hormones, and neuropsychiatric drugs are among the most common medications that can make you sweat out of the blue.

6. Heart attack

Sweating is mentioned among early symptoms of a heart attack. Breaking out into a cold sweat for no reason, coupled with a chest pain, dizziness, and discomfort on the left side of your body may indicate that you’re experiencing a heart attack.

7. Diabetes

People with diabetes may be prone to all the conditions mentioned above that make them sweat more than a healthy person. This can be due to low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), diabetes-related nervous system damage, or neuropathy, which all result in unnecessary stimulation of the sweat glands.

8. Anxiety

Sweating is the natural response of your body when it experiences stress. It sees anxiety as an indicator of an upcoming danger and starts releasing excessive water through your skin rather than your kidneys, so you don’t have to urinate in the middle of escaping danger.

Another reason — increased blood circulation also makes your body temperature rise. Sweat is the way we cool our bodies down.

9. Hormonal shifts

Fluctuation in your hormone levels during pregnancy, menstruation, puberty, or menopause can cause excessive sweating. Usually these conditions are associated with an increased body temperature caused by unregulated levels of estrogen and progesterone. Hot flush is a common symptom of menopause. During puberty the body starts establishing the right amount of hormones, which makes kids sweat more.

Although some of these causes might seem extreme, this information can be useful in emergency situations. Tell us if you’ve ever had to struggle with one of these symptoms and share what you do to overcome excessive sweating.

Preview photo credit,
Illustrated by Sergey Raskovalov for Bright Side
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