Reasons for Excessive Sweating + 6 Habits to Treat It

    Updated 05 February 2021 |
    Published 29 August 2018
    Fact Checked
    Reviewed by Dr. Andrei Marhol, General practitioner, medical advisor, Flo Health Inc., Lithuania
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    Sweating is directly connected to your lifestyle and everyday behavior. Learn what might be causing your heavy perspiration and what treatments are available with Flo!

    Excessive sweating before your period

    Some people develop sweating and hot flashes before their period starts each month. 

    These symptoms do not depend on age but are associated with fluctuations in the levels of certain hormones (progesterone and estrogen) during the cycle. These hormones influence the hypothalamus, which is the brain center that controls body temperature.

    In the second phase of the cycle, after ovulation:

    • Progesterone rises, resulting in a slightly higher body temperature than usual, which you may not feel.
    • Estrogen drops, which affects the hypothalamus and can change the body’s temperature.

    If the imbalance between estrogen and progesterone is significant, the hypothalamus settings go haywire, resulting in hot flashes and sweating. This means that the body has launched coping mechanisms to compensate for heat loss.

    If you experience these symptoms, you can minimize them by avoiding hot and stuffy places in the days leading up to your period. Wearing natural fabrics, doing light exercises, and eating more vegetables and fruits can also help balance your temperature and reduce sweating.

    Causes of excessive sweating

    Most people sweat because of physical activity, stress, and weather changes.

    Excessive sweating can happen before menstruation, especially at night. This is caused by fluctuations in hormone levels and a slight body temperature elevation in the luteal phase of the cycle. This condition is normal and doesn’t require treatment.

    If you experience PMS-related sweating, especially at night, you may want to shower more often, wear pajamas, use bed linen made from natural fabrics, and use a fan or open windows to maintain a comfortable temperature in the bedroom.

    Thankfully, PMS-related sweating often subsides with the onset of a new menstrual cycle.

    How to stop excessive sweating

    Sweating is a natural function of the body. If you feel uncomfortable about your perspiration, though, there are several ways to manage it. To avoid discomfort from excessive sweating, try the following ideas:

    • Daily hygiene: Use mild antibacterial soap when showering and apply deodorant on clean, dry skin. Special armpit pads can also help absorb sweat before it seeps through clothing.
    • Natural fabrics and multi-layered clothing: Wearing non-synthetic fabrics and light layers allows you to adjust quickly if the temperature changes.
    • Moderately cool temperature: Regular air circulation via a fan or air conditioning can also keep you cool.
    • Lifestyle changes: Excessive sweating can be caused by weight gain, nicotine use, alcohol abuse, and the consumption of spicy food and caffeinated drinks.
    • Drinking habits: Increase your intake of filtered water to stay hydrated and replenish your fluid balance after perspiring a lot.
    • Reduce stress: Meditation, breathing practices, yoga, long walks, warm baths, and quiet music can help promote a peaceful state of being.

    By following these suggestions, you can significantly reduce sweating and avoid related inconveniences.

    If sweating is affecting your daily life despite these tips, consult your health care provider or dermatologist. They can suggest some prescription-strength options to reduce excessive sweating.

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    Groin sweating: Why it happens and how to manage it

    In the human body, there are about four million sweat glands of two types: eccrine and apocrine. The latter are located in the armpit, on the external genitalia, and on the areolas of the breast.

    The secretions of these glands cause a specific, sometimes unpleasant odor because of bacterial activity.

    If your groin has become very sweaty in hot weather or after an intense workout, it’s totally normal. This means your sweat glands are functioning properly.

    However, you can address excessive sweating with a few e hygiene steps.

    After taking a shower, towel dry the groin area, wear comfortable underwear made from natural fabrics, and opt for looser garments, especially in hot weather.

    If you are physically active, consider using tight-fitting workout clothes. They will reduce friction against your skin folds and allow your body to remain dry and fresh.

    Sweaty feet: How to manage them

    Some people’s feet are often damp from sweat, which can cause great discomfort. This happens for a variety of reasons, such as a genetic predisposition, stress, hormonal failures, and medication use.

    The following tips can help minimize any discomfort associated with sweaty feet: 

    • Pay special attention to foot hygiene, particularly between your toes. Antibacterial soap can combat any germ-related odor as well. 
    • Don’t wear the same shoes every day. Try switching your footwear to allow each pair to dry in between uses. In warm weather, opt for open-toed shoes when possible.
    • Use special items in your shoes. Disposable insoles with plant-based antibacterial components will absorb moisture and prevent any odors. Sweat socks made of bamboo or merino wool are extremely absorbent, remove moisture, and have a strong antibacterial effect, which will help keep your feet warm in winter and pleasantly cool in summer.

    If you feel you need additional suggestions, your health care provider can recommend certain antiperspirants, ionotherapy, and other measures.

    What is emotional sweating?

    Sweating is mainly responsible for thermoregulation.

    Sometimes, sweating can stem from emotions. It occurs in response to fear, anxiety, stress, agitation, and pain regardless of the temperature of your surroundings.

    These strong emotions activate an internal protective mechanism, causing the body to work intensively. Your temperature rises, which leads to sweating. In this case, the sweat glands of the face, armpits, palms, and feet are stimulated.

    Here are some tips for dealing with emotional sweating:

    • Conscious breathing — deeply and slowly for a few minutes a day — can help mitigate the effects of stress.
    • Calm music reduces the heart rate and blood pressure, in addition to slowing your breathing.
    • A warm bath, swimming, or any water activity will help balance your nervous system, which is responsible for the physical sensations of stress.
    • Practicing mindfulness during emotional and stressful events can bring more awareness to your thoughts and feelings.
    • Laughter is an excellent remedy for emotional stress. 

    If sweating is difficult to manage on your own, consider contacting a health care provider for additional help.


    Schlereth, Tanja, et al. “Hyperhidrosis--Causes and Treatment of Enhanced Sweating.” Deutsches Arzteblatt International, Deutscher Arzte Verlag, Jan. 2009, “Body Odour (BO).” NHS Choices, NHS, 10 Jan. 2019, “Excessive Sweating (Hyperhidrosis).” NHS Choices, NHS, 23 Nov. 2017,

    History of updates

    Current version (05 February 2021)

    Reviewed by Dr. Andrei Marhol, General practitioner, medical advisor, Flo Health Inc., Lithuania

    Published (29 August 2018)

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