8 Reasons You're Hot and Sweaty All the Time

Are you constantly roasting? Read this.

By Cassie Shortsleeve, Men’s Health

A little bit of sweat isn’t anything to be afraid of. You likely come into contact with the mix of salt and water every day, heating up at the gym or being stuck in a stuffy conference room.

“Sweating is a normal phenomenon which allows the body to cool itself to prevent overheating,” explains Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin, M.D., a New York City-based dermatologist and founder of Entière Dermatology.

But being hot and bothered? That’s only sometimes a good thing. And if you’re sweating through your clothes or sheets, heating up even when it’s below freezing, or buying CVS’ out of antiperspirant, you’re likely wondering what the @#$% is going on — rightfully so. Below, we’ve got answers from doctors plus, strategies for cooling down once and for all.


You have a sweating disorder.

Pouring sweat at rest in a cool room? You could have hyperhidrosis, an excessive sweating disorder. “People with hyperhidrosis sweat without the need to cool the body down,” says Kanchanapoomi Levin. While hyperhidrosis sometimes runs in families or signals an underlying issue (an infection, heart problem, overactive thyroid, even cancer), it may also be caused by overactive nerves signaling your body to sweat more. If you have it, you could soak through clothes, notice drip sweating off of your fingertips, have beads of sweat running down your face, or run through socks.

If any of this sounds familiar — and you haven’t already — switch from deodorant to an antiperspirant, suggests Kanchanapoomi Levin. While you might not think of it, you actually can rub Dove all over your feet or hands, too, she says. Still sweating? Make an appointment with your derm to see what’s going on. You might benefit from a prescription-strength antiperspirant. Sometimes, docs also consider other meds or even surgery.


Your thyroid is out of whack.

If you’re hot and sweaty and you straight-up cannot stand the heat, you may have an overactive thyroid, a.k.a. hyperthyroidism. “One of the most common symptoms of hyperthyroidism is heat intolerance,” says Jonathan Arend, M.D., an internist at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. “Your thyroid, which regulates metabolism, is overactive and churning through your body’s machinery, running on overdrive like an overheating machine.”

Higher levels of thyroid hormones mean increased energy production, higher body temperature, and lots of sweat, adds David Weissman, M.D., a primary care physician who sees patients via telehealth app LiveHealth Online. Other signs of an overactive thyroid? Rapid heart rate, irregular heart rhythm, elevated blood pressure, and unexplained weight loss, says Weissman.

The good news: Hyperthyroidism is easy to diagnose and treat with medication, says Weissman.


You're super fit — or working on it.

Sweat can be a sign of peak fitness or a commitment to shaping up. “People who are more fit tend to start sweating sooner into their exercise regimen because they have adapted to be more efficient at maintaining a lower body temperature while exercising,” explains Weissman.

Out of shape and notice you’re dripping? While fit dudes tend to sweat faster than couch potatoes, guys who are overweight have more insulation, which means they create more heat and may sweat more throughout a workout, too, says Weissman.


You've got a fever.

Hot, sweaty, flushed, and feel like crap? Break out the thermometer: If your temp’s higher than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, you have a fever, which means your body is trying to mount a defense against whatever’s causing your illness (likely a virus or bacteria).

See your doc. Sometimes a fever is just the flu. Other times, it could signal something more serious — tuberculosis, a bacterial infection, or lupus, Arend says.


Your meds are to blame.

Common medications such as oral decongestants (pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine), erectile dysfunction meds (a.k.a. Viagra and Cialis), and even some antidepressants could have one side effect in common: excess sweating. That doesn’t mean you should necessarily stop taking them, but it could warrant a convo with your doc to see if there are other options that won’t make you break a sweat.

This handy list from the International Hyperhydrosis Society pinpoints some of the biggest medication offenders.


Diabetic? You may have hypoglycemia.

If you have diabetes and feel jittery, lightheaded, and sweaty, you may be experiencing hypoglycemia, or a drop in blood sugar levels, says Arend. As your body tries to deal with the stress of this situation, your sweat glands go into overdrive — hence more sweat, even if you don’t feel super hot. In the short-term, glucose tablets or drinking some fruit juice can help raise blood sugar levels. But untreated diabetic hypoglycemia can trigger seizures and even loss of consciousness, so if you have symptoms several times a week, see your doc, says Weissman.


You're anxious.

Being super-sweaty before a first date or important interview could be your body’s response to stress and anxiety. “Increased anxiety causes a rise in heart rate, blood pressure, and respiratory rate, and ultimately, increased body temperature,” explains Weissman. “As your body heats up, you’ll automatically sweat more.”

If you have generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), you might also notice you’re zonked, having trouble sleeping, you’re tense and achy (your back and neck are always killing you), or you’re super-irritable (read: you’re always on the edge of blowing up at someone). Simple stress reduction techniques (like meditation and yoga) can quell anxiety, says Weissman. But it’s best to loop in an expert, like a counselor or therapist, for added insight.


It's rare, but night sweats could be a sign of cancer.

Night sweats can be common — anxiety, stress, and sleep problems can cause them even in healthy men. But in rare cases, they could be a sign of cancers such as lymphoma, leukemia, kidney, and thyroid cancer.

Just as your body heats up when it fights an infection, your immune system ramps up to tackle other threats including cancer, Arend explains. If you notice night sweats are becoming a regular occurence (even after you kick off the thermal sheets) and they come with other symptoms (unexplained weight loss or fever), make an appointment with your doc.
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Men's Magazine: 8 Reasons You're Hot and Sweaty All the Time
8 Reasons You're Hot and Sweaty All the Time
Does your body seem to run extra-hot? Are you constantly mopping up sweat? Here are 8 reasons you might be hot and sweaty all the time.
Men's Magazine
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