Night Sweats: Is it an Underlying Problem or Disease?

When to be Concerned about Night Sweats

What is Night sweat? Night sweats refer to excessive sweating or perspiration by children, particularly during the night. In addition, it might be an indication of some serious underlying disease. Unquestionably, babies spend more time in deep sleep than adults do in their beds.

Not only, is it caused by sleeping under many blankets but also in a warm bedroom with less ventilation. Moreover, repeated episodes of extreme perspiration that may soak your nightclothes or bedding. Night sweat can cause hyperhidrosis which can lead to embarrassing situations causing physical and emotional discomfort.

Many parents may be alarmed by this situation when they have to wake up two-three times in a night to change their children pajamas due to sweating. Obviously, this will interrupt both the parents’ sleep and the baby.

This post will help you as your baby continues to grow if you can relate to the above situations.

In spite of sweating being common excessive sweating can be a symptom of an underlying disease or problem in your child.

Causes of Night Sweat In Babies


Excessive sweating may occur sometimes to your child without any medical condition.

its mostly seen on their face, feet, hands, and underarms.

We have two types of sweating:

  • Generalized excessive sweating occurs all over the body, to the point that clothes are wet.
  • Local excessive sweating occurs in only one region of the body, for instance, the arms.


Children having infections or unwell can have excessive sweating. The child, for instance, might be suffering from coughing, diarrhea. Clearly, if this occurs it is advisable to visit your doctor for a checkup.

It can also be a sign of congenital heart disease, congenital diabetes or a thyroid disorder which need immediate attention hence it’s good to see the doctor. Furthermore, children with congenital heart diseases sweat a lot while playing and eating. This can send panic to a parent who might be asking her/himself if the excess sweating is normal.

In addition, children suffering from kidney ailments sweats a lot. Especially children under 3 years experience abnormal sweating on the head which happens more during the night.  You can find this sweating more on the back of the head or neck and can cause the pillow to be soaked. Furthermore, this type of long-term sweating reduces or thins out the hair at the back of the head.


Fever is one of the most common reasons why children are brought to the doctor or to the hospital. Parents become very worried when their temp reaches 38 degrees which can lead to Night sweats.

Babies have several milestones. Clearly, teething can cause a child’s body temperature to go up too. Fever in any form makes the body feel hot and causes sweating when it comes down.

Night sweats in a baby should alert one to the possibility of acute fever which should be suitably investigated and treated if there is an infection.

The good thing is the body sweats to allow your baby to cool herself or to regulate her body temperature.

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea in babies is a sleep disorder in which your child’s breathing is partially or completely blocked repeatedly during sleep. It involves reductions and pauses in breathing that occur during an infant’s sleep.  On the other hand, it occurs mostly in premature infants.

During sleeping if your baby upper airway is too narrow or blocked it can lead to difficulties in breathing.

Undoubtably it is caused by an enlargement of the adenoids and tonsils making breathing difficult.

Periods of blockage occur regularly throughout the night and result in a poor, interrupted sleep pattern.

Alternatively to prevent complications that can affect children’s growth, cognitive development, and behavior early diagnosis and treatment are important. Also if your baby wakeup tired it would be good to see a doctor.


A very hot environment can cause excessive sweating for your baby. Dress your baby light but also covered for the night. Don’t let her sleep near a fireplace or direct sunlight.

Light Clothing reduces Night Sweat

A baby can overheat when asleep because of too much bedding or clothes, or because the room is too hot. Besides, if not checked can lead to cot death.

When covering your baby use light blankets with tiny holes which allow air to circulate keeping her cot warm not hot.

Don’t overdress your baby during hot weather, dress her in less clothing.

Hot weather can affect your baby or child because their bodies cannot adjust to changes in temperature as well as adults.

Cover your baby’s pram or stroller with a light cloth that still allows the air to circulate and keep her cool.

Solutions on How to Stop Excessive Sweating

  • Keep the environment cool
  • Dress less clothing.
  • Seek doctor advice in cases of congenital heart diseases, liver, kidney problems, etc.
  • Allow baby to drink a lot of water.
  • Keep baby under shade when outdoor.
  • Comfortable and light beddings.
  • Enough ventilation to allow plenty of air in the sleeping room.

Final Thoughts

Some babies sweat profusely during the deepest part of their nightly sleep cycle and end up soaking wet. Because babies spend much more time in this deepest stage of sleep, they’re more likely to sweat during the night.

Night Sweat Solution; Keep Environment Cool

Do not worry about your child’s night sweating as it is quite common in young children and is usually a direct result of the environmental conditions.

Sweating is a normal response that helps regulate body temperature. Sweating can also be a symptom of several medical conditions, especially when the sweating is excessive or inappropriate.

A baby monitor might be of assistance here as most are able to check on your baby breathing rate and movement. In case of discomfort, it will alarm you and you can rush to check on the baby.

Most babies sweat a lot on the head, especially when they are in a deep sleep state. You find a parent always wiping the sweat dry from the face. Finally ensures your essential baby items from the bed, stroller, and the carrier will keep your baby warm not hot.

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