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Uncovering the Causes of Night Sweats in Men

Ana Marie Schick Feb 20, 2024

Night sweats in men

Waking up covered in sweat is an unpleasant part of life for many. That drenched, overwhelmed, sticky, sweaty, and uncomfortable feeling that startles you awake in the middle of the night can affect men at different points in their lives for various reasons.

Whether you get up to change shirts, kick off the sheets, or end up tossing and turning, night sweats make sleeping difficult. Even worse, it makes feeling rested and ready to take on the day even harder.

In some cases, night sweats are not caused by external factors such as the temperature of your bedroom or the type of bedding you use but rather by underlying physiological processes or health conditions.

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Night sweats can range in severity, but they are often described as being severe enough to soak through clothing and bedding.

Both males and females can have night sweats due to similar factors like bacterial infection and stress, but there are also causes unique to each. The Mayo Clinic describes night sweats as periods of excess perspiration during nighttime hours that may soak bedding or bedclothes. [1]

Several factors can cause night sweats, including mental, physical, and psychological conditions and hormonal shifts that interfere with our temperature-balance systems.

Occasionally, drinking something hot, taking a hot shower, or working out might even trigger them. Fortunately, there are methods to decrease nighttime sweating and enhance sleep quality and habits.

Common Causes of Night Sweats in Men

Several elements that trigger night sweats in men, including physical, medical, and psychological conditions.

Increased Body Temperature

Body temperature research indicates that we have a number of mechanisms within us that keep our internal cooling and heating systems in check. Typically, our bodies want to stay at roughly the same temperature or the “thermoneutral zone.”

At a lower temperature, the body responds by shivering, thus increasing your temperature. When the thermoneutral zone is higher than usual, we start to sweat (you guessed it) so that the body can release heat and ultimately cool down. [2, 3]

Some scientists also discuss the “thermal comfort zone,"” which is the temperature at which humans are most comfortable. This optimal temperature is narrower than the thermoneutral zone. [4]

Interestingly, men have a lower tolerance for heat than women. Yet, gender is only one of the many factors influencing a person's optimum thermoneutral zone.

Numerous health-related issues can throw a person's thermoneutral zone out of balance. And the results? They can be tough to deal with. Night after night of sleeplessness, along with soaking sheets, followed by ongoing sleep deprivation and possibly poor long-term health results.

Read More: Interested in reading more on the topic - Why Do I Get So Hot When I Sleep? It can be another resource to help determine what is causing you to sleep hot.

Greatest product ever! No more night sweats! No more being up all night. Having consistent, solid sleep EVERY night!!!

Greg A.

Sleepme Customer (Google Review)

Vigorous Exercise Routine

Exercising can make you sweat, but is it possible for it to trigger sweating long after you've finished? A prominent study from 2011 indicated that intense physical activity boosts your metabolism for several hours afterward.

It proposed that your metabolism might continue to cause sweating even once your heart rate has normalized. Nonetheless, some health professionals argue that your metabolic rate drops as your heart rate decreases, typically remaining elevated for about an hour post-exercise.

Pay attention to any unusual sweating later on the day or during the night when you work out. Observing this pattern following vigorous exercise sessions can help you pinpoint the cause and modify your workout routine to remain cool and comfortable throughout your sleep.

Keep in Mind: Some research suggests frequent exercise can lower the thermoneutral zone, causing night sweats in males. Yet, it doesn't imply that you should limit or stop exercising. A long-term, well-planned exercise routine is key to good health and sleep.

Serious Infections

Night sweats can also be a symptom of an infection. When your body is fighting off an infection, it releases inflammatory mediators that temporarily raise your thermoneutral zone.

The range of potential infections can vary significantly, from relatively mild viral infections accompanied by a low-grade fever to severe, potentially life-threatening conditions.

Man stressed

Stress and Anxiety

Common symptoms are stress and anxiety, which can be either short-term or chronic. Experiencing traumatic events, such as job loss, relationship issues, or losing a loved one, can be highly stressful, causing excess sweating, which can affect sleep quality.

Major life events are not the only culprits, as research has shown that even a complicated math problem can put sweat glands into overdrive.

There are additional symptoms of anxiety that you may experience, and they include the following:

  • Trouble focusing on tasks
  • Body dizziness and trembling
  • Become more irritable
  • A feeling of being weak or fatigued
  • Stomach issues
  • Mental health

Chronic stress and anxiety may cause long-lasting sweating. When stress and anxiety persist, the body continuously releases cortisol, which can lead to increased sweating during both day and night. This constant sweating can be a physical indication of the chronic stress and anxiety an individual is going through.

How exactly do stress and anxiety trigger sweating? They can cause sweating by triggering the release of cortisol, which is a stress hormone. When our brain senses a threat, it signals our body to release cortisol. This hormone can raise our blood sugar levels and blood pressure and keep us awake. Furthermore, cortisol can also cause sweating as a response to stress.

Without treatment, stress and anxiety can impact your everyday life. If you feel you are struggling or in emotional distress, there are ways to get help. Please visit or reach out to your primary medical provider.

As we've discussed, frequent night sweats can be caused by stress, which can lead to sleeping hot. If you find that stress affects your sleep, we've compiled some helpful tips for a cooler, more restful night.

Prescriptions or Certain Medications

Various drugs can cause men to sweat while sleeping as a side effect. Some that are linked to excessive sweating include: [5]

Some antidepressant medications: A 2020 study revealed that around 29 percent of individuals on antidepressants have reported night sweats as a side effect.

Steroids (e.g., cortisone, prednisone)

Steroids affect the body's hormonal balance and metabolism, which can lead to various side effects, including increased body temperature and sweating.

Diabetes Medications

Medications for diabetes can induce night sweats when blood glucose levels fall beneath 70 mg/dL, triggering hypoglycemia. This condition can result in symptoms such as trembling, disorientation, and excessive sweating.


Antidepressants may induce night sweats by interfering with dopamine receptors in the brain, potentially resulting in heightened perspiration as a secondary effect.

There are other forms of medication that can cause men to sweat at night, including antidepressants, hormone therapies, antipyretic drugs, diabetes medications, and hormone treatments for prostate cancer.

We highly recommend that you carefully read the labeling information on all prescription and OTC drugs to be fully aware of the potential side effects. If you believe sleeping hot at night is caused by medication, speak with your doctor or sleep specialist.

They may suggest an alternate drug or coping strategy if the sweating is still disrupting your sleep or causing other problems.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

Recent case studies have shown that diseases such as GERD [6] (Gastroesophageal reflux disease) can be associated with the rare symptom of nighttime sweating. Symptoms may include pain in the chest, trouble swallowing, heartburn, and more.

Plus, certain foods can affect your sleep and even worsen your sweats at night. This includes tomato-based foods, citrus, chocolate, caffeine, coffee, avoiding hot drinks and spicy foods, and even alcoholic beverages that may cause reflux.

If you are one of those affected by reflux, it's important to note the foods and drinks that contribute to your symptoms of feeling hot. By worsening the symptoms of acid reflux, you unknowingly contribute to your hot flashes.

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Low Testosterone Levels

As men age, their bodies produce lower hormone and testosterone levels, also called male hypogonadism. Many physicians prescribe hormone replacement therapy to help with sweating at night and other symptoms of low testosterone, including hot flashes and lower libido.

In addition to low testosterone levels, men sweat at night due to hormonal disorders such as hyperthyroidism. [7] Also known as having an overactive thyroid, hyperthyroidism can create excessive sweating. Certain foods can help naturally increase testosterone.

Did You Know: 39% of males aged 45+ may experience a drop in testosterone. [8]


In some cases, the nervous system will activate human sweat glands for no apparent medical reason, possibly resulting in excessive sweating during the day and night. This medical condition is known as hyperhidrosis disorder.

A person suffering from this disorder can have a great amount of sweating that occurs across the body or only over one or two specific areas. The inconsistency of hyperhidrosis leaves researchers baffled as to why sweating affects those afflicted so differently.

Excessive sweating has been known to drench clothes at night. In a few cases, symptoms only occur on the palms of the hands, armpits, head, or feet, known as primary idiopathic hyperhidrosis. Cases of hyperhidrosis require an assortment of treatments, depending on the severity and underlying cause.

Sleep Statistic: Roughly 30% to 50%  of individuals with this medical issue have a family history of excessive sweating. [9]

Sleep Apnea

Men who experience night sweats may suffer from sleep apnea, a disorder in which a person stops breathing during their sleep. Sleep apnea can occur multiple times throughout the night, but if sleeping alone or with a partner who tends to be a deep sleeper, you may not be aware it's happening.

Sleep apnea symptoms include headache, snoring, depression, anxiety, waking up, gasping or choking, difficulty focusing, and more.

How common is sleep apnea among men? It's relatively common among men, with approximately 25% of men experiencing this condition. [10] It is worth mentioning that sleep apnea can also impact women, although the prevalence tends to be higher among men.

This machine (Chilipad Dock Pro) greatly improved the quality of my sleep. I no longer have night sweats, and my bed is much more comfortable.

Steven T

Sleepme Customer (Google Review)

Dock Pro bed cooling system

How to Stop Night Sweats in Men

Several options are available to help stop or reduce night sweats. In some cases, it's best to get to the root of the issue and seek advice from your primary doctor or a medical professional.

To improve your chances of a good night's sleep, we recommend trying some of the following below to help prevent, stop, or how to treat night sweats in men for good.

Purchase a Bed Cooling System

People often look into Sleepme's solutions, such as cooling mattress toppers (Chilipad Dock Pro and Chilipad Cube) to seek relief. All of these products have been proven to help stop or reduce the serenity of night sweats.

One thing that makes cooling mattress pads a particularly great solution is that many offer flexibility to set schedules. This is the perfect way to get your bed prepped and ready for you in the right temperature range before you get into it.

Everybody requires a different temperature to optimize their sleep, and, fortunately, the range of temperatures for pads even cool and heat from 55 to 115º Fahrenheit.

Ultimately, cooling mattress pads cool down your core body temperature and help you regulate your body rather than constantly chasing the thermostat and trying to control the environment. Additional products include bedding or breathable mattresses that are designed to keep you cool.

This machine (Dock Pro) greatly improved the quality of my sleep. I no longer have night sweats, and my bed is much more comfortable.

Steven T

Sleepme Customer (Google Review)

Temperature-Regulated Sheets

Traditionally, sheets keep you warm because they rest against your body's skin and trap your body heat. If you're sleeping warm, it seems like the natural solution would be to sleep without sheets.

Science, [11] however, supports the use of cooling bed sheets. They have a purpose. As we fall asleep, our temperature drops and sheets were intended to help maintain the warmth and prevent shivering. It isn't just about maintaining warmth, though.

Sheets can signal to your body that it is time to sleep, which is just another step in a healthy and functioning circadian rhythm.

The fabric type, thread count, and features of your sheet can help make you more successful when you go to sleep – with some even having cooling properties.

Improve Your Sleep Environment

Check your room temperature. If you have a warm bedroom, you can adjust the room temperature. Experts recommend you set your optimum room sleeping temperature between 65 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit.

One way to improve your environment is by adding a cooling mattress topper. They are the perfect sleep solution for winning this temperature battle with a partner. Night sweats represent one of men's most significant barriers to high-quality sleep hygiene.

Other helpful tips to improve your environment include making your bedroom dark, reducing noise, avoid watching TV or scrolling on your phone, and reducing blue light.

Evaluate Your Exercise Program

If you have recently started a workout program, review it with your healthcare provider. As discussed earlier, taking a moment to evaluate your current exercise routine is important as overtraining can cause you to sweat excessively and experience night sweats.

Read More: Sweating During Workouts: What You Should Know

Limit Certain Foods

Certain foods are known to induce night sweats in men, particularly those that raise body temperature or metabolism. Spicy foods, with their capsaicin content, can trick your body into feeling warmer, leading to increased sweating. [12]

Similarly, high-fat and heavy meals require more energy to digest, potentially raising body heat. Monitoring your diet and identifying any correlation between your food intake and night sweats can be crucial in managing this discomfort. Consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice and to explore other potential causes of night sweats.

Did You Know: Research has found that sleeping on your left side can help reduce reflux episodes caused by GERD. [13]

Monitor Caffeine to Prevent Night Sweats

Caffeine, a widely consumed stimulant found in various beverages, has been known to influence the body's thermoregulation and potentially lead to night sweats. When consumed, caffeine can cause blood vessels to widen and elevate body and skin temperature, which in turn can increase sweat production.

The effects of caffeine can persist in the system for up to 10 hours, meaning that consuming it later in the day can carry its sweaty repercussions into your sleep.

However, people may differ in their sensitivity to caffeine, as some people claim they can drink coffee and still sleep deeply without experiencing night sweats. In contrast, others find that they must stop their caffeine intake around lunchtime or earlier to prevent it from disrupting their sleep.

Did You Know: Today, around 80% of the global population consumes caffeinated products daily, with this figure rising to 90% among adults in North America.

In general, consuming your last caffeinated beverage at least 10 hours before you go to sleep is advisable to minimize the possibility of experiencing night sweats.

Monitoring and reducing intake of these drinks, especially before bedtime, can help mitigate night sweats and lead to a more comfortable night's sleep. Gain a deeper understanding of how caffeine affects your sleep and ways to balance its intake.

Alcohol and Tobacco Consumption

Alcohol and tobacco use can have a significant impact on night sweats by affecting the thermoregulatory system in the body. Alcohol can cause blood vessels to widen and increase sweating, contributing to night sweats. Prolonged excessive alcohol consumption can lead to withdrawal symptoms when the alcohol fades from the system, and these symptoms can also include night sweats.

Similarly, the nicotine found in tobacco products can stimulate sweat glands, even after the last cigarette of the day. Nicotine mimics the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, although unregulated, causing an increase in its release in the brain.

This results in higher levels of acetylcholine and an elevated body temperature, both of which can lead to increased sweating during sleep. Both alcohol and tobacco use have the potential to disrupt the body's thermoregulatory system and increase night sweats. Alcohol widens blood vessels, while nicotine raises body temperature and stimulates sweat glands.

These effects of alcohol can persist even after the substances have left the body, contributing to excessive sweating while sleeping.

Relax Before Bedtime

Relaxation techniques, such as meditation and deep breathing, are well-accepted tools for decreasing one of the most common causes of night sweats in men. What is the cause? Stress and anxiety disorder.

Below are recommended meditation and breathing exercises to help calm the mind and body, leading up to bedtime. Making simple lifestyle changes improves your overall health and sleep.

Meditation and Breathing Exercises

Maintain a Healthy Weight:

Excess weight can cause night sweats and sweat in some individuals. Considered a risk factor, obesity may lead to not only feeling hot but sleep apnea (a sleep disorder). Weight loss is recommended to help treat these common conditions.

Sleep Study: A study discovered that approximately 30% of obstructive sleep apnea patients experienced night sweats, compared to 9% of healthy men without the condition. [14]

When to Contact Your Doctor?

Please contact your doctor and seek medical attention if you're concerned about night sweats or any other sleep challenges. Your physician may want to recommend further examination or prescribe medications. Other symptoms may include the following:

  • Fever
  • Mood Changes
  • Sleep Disturbances
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness or fatigue and weakness
  • Weight loss unrelated to diet or lifestyle changes

If you're encountering any of these symptoms, it's important to consult your doctor. They could be indicative of underlying medical conditions that require professional attention.

Additionally, you should also contact your doctor if the symptoms worsen or if you are experiencing excessive sleep deprivation.

Final Thoughts

If you have night sweats, you're not alone, as sweating is a fairly common issue in males while they sleep. As you can see, there are a number of reasons. Fortunately, it's possible to find relief from those annoying and uncomfortable symptoms.

Identifying the source of your night sweats and finding a resolution may be discovered without medical help. However, if your attempts to reduce them are ineffective, consult your physician to ensure there is not a more serious health problem.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can the ChiliPad Dock Pro Help with Night Sweats in Men?

Yes, the ChiliPad Dock Pro is designed to help reduce night sweats in men. It allows users to control their bed temperature, ranging from 55 to 115°F, enabling them to find the ideal temperature that suits their body's needs.

This personalized temperature control can significantly reduce the occurrence of night sweats, ensuring a more comfortable and uninterrupted night's sleep. Maintaining a consistent, cool sleeping environment is particularly beneficial for those who experience night sweats.

Why Do I Wake up Drenched in Sweat?

Many men often wake up drenched in sweat, which can be caused by various factors. One common reason for this is nocturnal hyperhidrosis, also known as night sweats. This medical condition may be influenced by hormonal changes such as low testosterone, sleep apnea, infections, or certain medications.

External factors like a warm sleeping environment, spicy food, or heavy bedding can also contribute to excessive sweating during sleep. It's important to consult your doctor if night sweats are frequent or severe, as they can provide a more accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment recommendations.


[1] Author (2020, February 20). Night sweats: Definition. Mayo Clinic. View Resource.

[2] Ryan, T. (2021, July 28). What causes night sweats in men? [Blog Post]. Sleep Foundation. View Resource.

[3] Kingma, B., Frijns, A., van Marken Lichtenbelt, W. (2012) The thermoneutral zone: implications for metabolic studies. Frontiers in Bioscience, E4. 1975-1985. View Resource.

[4] Schlader, Z.J. (2014). The human thermoneutral and thermal comfort zones: Thermal comfort in your own skin blood flow. Temperature, 2 (1). 47-48. View Resource.

[5] Author (2020, February 20). Night sweats: Causes. Mayo Clinic. View Resource.

[6] GERD: Berdnikov, A., McPhee, S., LaBine, L., & Fatoye, T. (2020). Night sweats as a manifestation of gastroesophageal reflux disease. Canadian family physician Medecin de famille canadien, 66(12), 901–903. View Study

[7] Bryce C. (2020). Persistent Night Sweats: Diagnostic Evaluation. American family physician, 102(7), 427–433.

[8] Rivas, A. M., Mulkey, Z., Lado-Abeal, J., & Yarbrough, S. (2014). Diagnosing and managing low serum testosterone. Proceedings (Baylor University. Medical Center), 27(4), 321–324. View Study

[9] Haider, A., & Solish, N. (2005). Focal hyperhidrosis: diagnosis and management. CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association journal = journal de l'Association medicale canadienne, 172(1), 69–75. View Study

[10] Cleveland Clinic. (2020, March 3). Sleep Apnea. Retrieved from Cleveland Clinic website: View Resource.

[11] Nelson, B. (2017, August 18). There’s a Scientific Reason Why You Always Sleep Under Blankets—Even When It’s Hot. View Resource

[12] Schuler, A (2021, July 5) Night Sweats in Men Causes, Symptoms, Cancer, Diabetes, Alcohol, Stress and Night Sweats Treatment in Men. [Blog Post]. American Celiac. Retrieved from: View Resource

[13] Person, E., Rife, C., Freeman, J., Clark, A., & Castell, D. O. (2015). A Novel Sleep Positioning Device Reduces Gastroesophageal Reflux: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of clinical gastroenterology, 49(8), 655–659. View Study

[14] Arnardottir ES, Janson C, Bjornsdottir E, et alNocturnal sweating—a common symptom of obstructive sleep apnoea: the Icelandic sleep apnoea cohortBMJ Open 2013;3:e002795. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2013-002795