Sweating When Cold? Causes and Treatments For Cold Sweats

Do you find yourself sweating even when it's cold outside? There are a few reasons for cold sweats, such as your environment, how many clothing layers you’re wearing, stress or anxiety, or a medical condition such as hyperhidrosis.

Sweating in the summer is normal and expected. But noticeable sweat marks in the dead of winter are sure to draw unwanted attention.

Today we’ll learn more about cold sweats, plus ways to cope.

Why You're Sweating When Cold

Your body produces sweat to cool down your body temperature. Normal sweat is a typical response to exercise or the weather on a hot day. However, there are other reasons why your sweat glands spring into action regardless of activity or weather.

Sweating in cold weather seems nonsensical, but it happens to the best of us. Here are a few common reasons why you’re sweating in cold weather.

1. Your Environment

First, assess your surroundings. Did you bundle up to brave the outdoors, then immediately step into a warm home or building? Your heavy clothing and the drastic change in body temperature may cause you to break a sweat.

2. Your Clothing Layers

There’s a specific method to use when it comes to cold weather layering.

Layers that are too tight against the skin don’t offer any room for air to circulate and insulate your body. If you aren’t layering correctly and allowing your skin to breathe, you’ll trap sweat and moisture in your clothing, which will keep you damp and feel unpleasant.

3. Hyperhidrosis

Is your sweat local to a specific area of your body? Primary hyperhidrosis might be causing you to sweat when it’s cold.

For example, if you experience your armpits sweating when cold, you could have a health condition called axillary hyperhidrosis. Also known as excessive underarm sweating, people with this condition will sweat heavily in their armpits without warning.

According to the International Hyperhidrosis Society, nearly 5% of the world’s population suffers from hyperhidrosis, and millions more live undiagnosed. So excessive sweating — even when it’s cold — is more common than you think.

To combat axillary hyperhidrosis, try wearing a sweat proof undershirt. Check out the Thompson Tee, available for men or women. These shirts are made for people with hyperhidrosis, by people with hyperhidrosis.

4. Stress and Anxiety

Stress and social anxiety can also cause you to sweat when you’re cold.

Stress sweating and nervous sweating occur as a natural fight or flight response to nerve-wracking, exciting or tense situations unrelated to the temperature or any medical conditions..

A lack of exercise can add to the likelihood of both stress and cold sweats. Light exercise and relaxation techniques can help your nervous system reduce stress sweat and cold sweat.

5. Medical Conditions and Medications

Certain medications or medical conditions can cause secondary hyperhidrosis or diaphoresis, where you sweat across your body regardless of the temperature.

  • Medications like antidepressants and diabetes drugs have potential side effects such as sweating in hot or cold environments.
  • Conditions like hypoglycemia (extremely low blood sugar), hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland) and diabetes can also cause sweating at any temperature.
  • Hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy and menopause can trigger excessive sweating.
  • Some medical conditions and medications can also cause night sweats.

IMPORTANT: Seek medical attention immediately if excessive sweat is accompanied by:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • High blood pressure
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Seizures
  • Fever

Does Sweating in Cold Weather Make You Sick?

You've probably grown up believing cold weather and wet clothing can make you sick. But is there any truth behind these ideas?

In short, no — you can’t get sick from sweating in the cold directly. However, rhinoviruses that cause common colds can thrive in low temperatures. And while flu season revolves around winter, the virus primarily spreads by indoor person-to-person contact via respiratory droplets.

How to Stop Cold Sweats

Here are some tips you can use to stop sweating when it's cold.

1. Talk to Your Doctor

Were you recently diagnosed with an illness? Or did you start taking medication around the same time your cold sweats began?

If you suspect a medical condition or medication might be causing you to sweat when cold, consult your doctor.

2. Wear a Sweat Proof Undershirt

While a sweat proof undershirt won’t help you sweat less, it will hide those wet marks that'll be noticeable once you take off your jacket.

Thompson Tee’s undershirts are perfect for fall and winter outfits, and are easy to layer. They're available in short and long-sleeve versions, in crewneck or v-neck styles. These revolutionary undershirts feature a built-in sweat proof barrier that traps sweat and odor.

Sweating when cold? Wear a Thompson Tee sweat proof undershirt for cold sweats

3. Rethink Your Diet

Did you know some foods cause sweating while others reduce perspiration? Avoid sweating-inducing foods and beverages like (spicy food or caffeinated drinks), and keep foods that reduce sweat handy.

4. Wear More Lightweight Layers

Instead of piling on heavy sweaters and thick jackets, think lighter.

Wear a few extra layers (like a sweat proof undershirt, dress shirt, light cardigan, etc.), so you can adjust your clothing to match the indoor temperature. This will leave you feeling cooler throughout the day and less obsessed with embarrassing sweat marks.

5. Take Action to Reduce Stress

Reducing stress is easier said than done. It takes a conscious effort and a well-defined plan to put your mind at ease.

Start by incorporating regular exercise (like walking or weight training) into your weekly routine. Stress management tactics like concentrated breathing can also keep you calm, collected — and less sweaty.

The Easiest Way to Control Cold Sweats

Sweating when cold is uncomfortable, but it doesn’t have to be. To conquer your cold sweats, wear a Thompson Tee - the fastest, simplest and most effective solution for preventing sweat marks.

Stay confident, cool and dry throughout fall and winter! Try it risk-free for 30 days.