But in some cases, they can also be a sign of a more serious health problem.
1) Sleep apnoea
People who suffer from sleep apnoea find it difficult to sleep well at night because their respiratory passages tend to become blocked, and in fact their breathing is interrupted by involuntary episodes of blocked airways throughout the night. You can learn how to recognise the signs of sleep apnoea here.
Sleep apnoea is a syndrome that can provoke excessive night sweating as a side effect, as well as causing snoring, a buildup of fatigue, headaches and/or bad moods caused by lack of sleep. Did you known that singing is one of our 6 exercises to help you naturally stop snoring?
If you experience any of the above symptoms as well as excessive sweating at night, it is best to consult a doctor. If obstructive sleep apnoea is diagnosed, you can and should treat it before it leads to any major health problems (such as heart disease or diabetes).
Should you require further testing, you will be put on observation for at least one night, in order to determine the best treatment methods for you.
2) The menopause
We are sure you are already aware of this, but just in case: the menopause only effects women, so gentlemen, there is no need to worry!
The average age for the onset of the menopause in the UK is around 51 years old, although some women precociously experience night sweats a few years earlier, from their thirties onwards.
The menopause is characterised by the end of menstruation and fertility. This period subjects the woman to fluctuations in hormone levels, which regularly rise and fall, causing changes in body temperature.
If they symptoms are too irritating and disrupt your sleep, consult your doctor or an alternative therapist such as a naturopath or an aromatherapist in order to find an appropriate treatment to provide relief.
3) Stress and anxiety
Some people tend to become regularly stressed or anxious, sometimes on a long term basis, depending on their situations. All these negative emotions can manifest as night sweats.
The first thing you can do is consult this article which will help you use plants to sleep better: Top 10 natural sleeping pills.
Alternatively, you have the option of seeking help from a psychologist or psychotherapist, who can help you change how you think, in order to identify and transform your negative thoughts (which lead to stress and anxiety) into positive thoughts and actions.
You can also try other natural alternative methods such as acupuncture, hypnosis, relaxation, meditation, exercise, healthy eating, etc.
4) A bacterial or viral infection
Night sweats can be one of the side effects of a wide variety of ilnesses caused by bacterial or viral infections or certain types of cancer.
Only your doctor can give you a precise diagnosis in order to rule out any major complications via testing.
The treatment will vary depending on the diagnosis although in general, it is a matter of antibiotics.
Hypoglycemia is characterised by low blood sugar levels. This can be why people with diabetes often wake during the night, due to night sweating.
However, hypoglycemia can also lead to excessive sweating during the day in diabetics.
Keep track of your night sweats and if they become frequent or are accompanied by other symptoms, consult a doctor.