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Clinical Perspectives: Why Are Pregnant Women So Sweaty?

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Clinical Perspectives: Why Are Pregnant Women So Sweaty?

Welcome to Clinical Perspectives, a new column from Mommy Matters. We cull the newest, most important pregnancy and postpartum news and break it down into a few takeaway points you need to know. Also, we have our own medical expert, Dr. Shirazian, who reviews each article and adds the clinical perspective. If you are interested in learning more on your own, our MD-trusted sources include the American College of Obstetricians and GynecologistsAmerican Academy of Pediatrics, and Very Well Health.


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July 2, 2019 - A recent New York Times Parenting column rounded up reader experiences and expert opinions on a unique phenomenon: excessive night sweating during and after pregnancy. 

Key Takeaways:

  • Pregnancy night sweats are common - a 2013 study found that 35% of women had them during pregnancy and 29% had them postpartum. The exact cause isn’t known due to lack of research on the topic. 
  • Changing hormone levels are thought to be the major cause, as estrogen and progesterone rise dramatically during pregnancy and drop after birth. These hormonal fluctuations may explain why pregnancy hot flashes seem a lot like menopausal hot flashes.
  • Women with high pre-pregnancy BMIs, depressive symptoms, and/or African-American backgrounds are more likely to report night sweats. 
  • Moderate exercise, which has been shown to have health benefits in pregnancy overall, may help alleviate night sweats.
  • Women’s health, especially that of pregnant women, is extremely under-studied. So if you experience night sweats, it’s important to share this with your healthcare provider. The more well-known these symptoms are, the more likely they are to be studied by medical researchers. 

You can read the original article here.


Disclaimer: This is general medical information and not specific medical advice.  It does not and should not replace diagnosis or treatment by your healthcare provider. If you are seeking personal recommendations, advice, and/or treatment, please consult your physician. If you have an emergency, you should contact 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room.