What are the Causes of Excessive Sweating in Women?

Relying on the data provided by the International Hyperhidrosis Society, excessive sweating or, as it is also called, hyperhidrosis is a problem for 365 million people worldwide. A study published in the Archives of Dermatological Research journal claims that 4.8% of Americans suffer from this problem, it makes more than 15 million people.

Such a spread of the issue may be explained by numerous underlying health problems, which can trigger excessive sweating as a symptom, as well as primary focal hyperhidrosis, which is not the result of any other disease but is believed to be provoked by hereditary factors. Among the common causes of excessive sweating are overly active thyroid, hypoglycemia in diabetics, stress, and hormonal changes. We’ll stop in detail on conditions, which are more characteristic of women.

causes of excessive sweating in women

Perimenopause and menopause

A rapid decrease in the levels of estrogens in women who come to an end of their fertile period of life often trigger the so-called hot flushes. These are unexpected “waves of heat” coming from the inside, which make women sweat heavily. In some cases, they even need to change clothes.

75% of menopausal women report having hot flushes. Hormone replacement therapy, as well as other medicinal treatments, are very often not effective for cutting back on this symptom.


Changes in the levels of hormones women go through during pregnancy can have a serious impact on the body’s ability to control the temperature. In addition, the growing body mass and accelerated metabolic processes, which are characteristic of pregnant women only add to the intensity of sweating.

Anxiety and depression

Mental health issues, anxiety and depression, in particular, can trigger excessive sweating. It is connected with overly high levels of cortisol – a hormone, which is secreted in people under the influence of stress. Cortisol increases the heart rate and raises the body temperature thus leading to excessive sweating.

The study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology in 2016 revealed that out of 2017 patients, 21.3% of people with hyperhidrosis suffered from anxiety. Whereas the corresponding number of those without hyperhidrosis was only 7.5%. The prevalence of hyperhidrosis in patients with depression was 27.2% compared to 9.7% of individuals who had no problems with excessive sweating.

Published by Evelyn Green