Alcohol and Night Sweats; What is the Connection?

Medically Reviewed By Kayla Loibl | Last Edited : JUNE  09, 
2021 
| 3 Sources


Alcohol and Night Sweats- Individuals who are detoxing from alcohol and experiencing withdrawal often experience night sweats.  Alcoholics who suffer from alcohol and night sweats may experience sweating, irritability, anxiety, and difficulty sleeping. The severity of these symptoms can depend on how much alcohol was consumed and what types of substances were used with it.

For those who have been drinking heavily for years on end, insomnia is not uncommon. When someone stops drinking abruptly, or “cold turkey”, the combination of hormonal changes and dehydration can lead to night sweats. This makes it difficult to sleep which leads to even more night sweats!  

 It's important to remember that your body needs time to heal after quitting an addiction so you shouldn't be expecting full recovery right away—take time to recuperate before starting your journey to sobriety.

It is important to note that alcohol withdrawal can have some serious health risks, such as seizures and death. Because of this, if you have been drinking large amounts of alcohol, or for a long period of time, talking to your doctor would be a wise choice to make. They can determine your risk for complications and the need for medical treatment while detoxing.

Nonetheless, here are some things that you should be aware of regarding alcohol and night sweats:

Alcohol and Night Sweats - How Do They Happen?

A night sweat is a clinical term for an increase in temperature, sweating, or both that occurs while sleeping. Night sweats are most often caused by hot flashes (a symptom of menopause), but they can also be triggered if someone has high fever, inflammation from infection (such as pneumonia), too much alcohol consumption, or even a urinary tract infection.

Although these causes may sound serious, many people who experience them will recover without treatment and their symptoms will go away on its own! However there are other cases when night sweats signal more significant health issues such as sleep apnea (when breathing stops during sleep). If you have been experiencing this problem then it's important to talk with your doctor about it!

Are Alcohol and Night Sweats a Symptom of Withdrawal?

The symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can be unpleasant, but they are not life-threatening. Alcohol withdrawal is a condition that occurs when you suddenly stop drinking, and the body has to adjust to living without alcohol. The most common symptom of withdrawal is alcohol and night sweats.

In an article by the Mayo Clinic, they state that “night sweats are typically a symptom of moderate to severe alcohol withdrawal.” The feeling of night sweats is not pleasant - there have been cases where people who experience them will actually wake up soaked with sweat. Alcohol and night sweats can also be accompanied by nausea and restlessness which can make it difficult for someone to fall asleep or stay asleep throughout the entire night.

How can I stop my night sweats from happening again?

Alcohol and night sweats are not a condition that anyone should have to go through, but unfortunately many people do. There are many different reasons for night sweats and some of them can be treated or stopped altogether with the right treatment plan. Here’s how you can deal with night sweats so that they don't affect your sleeping schedule.

  • Drink Plenty of Water Before Bedtime

If you're not drinking enough fluids during the day, your body will try to get rid of them at night when it's time for sleep. Drinking more fluid throughout the evening can help prevent this from happening and reduce hot flashes as well!

  • Do Light Exercises

Light exercise can also help because sweating helps to cool down your skin. Try taking a walk or doing some gentle yoga moves in order to stay active but still tire out early so that you rest easy and do not overheat while sleeping.

  • Avoid Caffeine

Be sure to avoid caffeine after twelve o'clock in order keep yourself hydrated through the evening hours without disturbing your sleep cycle with stimulating substances like coffee or sodas.

  • Change the Temperature of Your Room

Many people associate night sweats with being too hot. This is because one's body temperature rises when it goes into overdrive in an attempt to cool itself down, so turning your thermostat up a bit might help you sleep better at night.

  • Drink Warm Beverages

It can be difficult for someone who has night sweats to drink anything cold, but drinking warm beverages may help calm their nerves and relax them before bedtime. Some people recommend herbal tea or coffee, which are both usually quite soothing on the stomach as well.  

alcohol-and-night-sweatsPhoto by Kinga Cichewicz

What Should I Do If I'm Experiencing These Symptoms Right Now?

You're reading this article because you are experiencing some symptoms that don't seem normal. It could be a sign of something serious, or it may just be your body's reaction to stress. Either way, the best thing to do is see your doctor about the alcohol and night sweats to find out what's going on!

The first step in deciding how to proceed is figuring out which symptom(s) you have been experiencing most often. Once you know that, there are a number of different tests and treatments that can help determine what might be wrong with you. Let’s take a look at these symptoms one by one:

  • Dizziness or vertigo.

Dizziness is the sensation of spinning and can be caused by a number of conditions, including benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). If you have been experiencing dizziness for more than three months with no identifiable cause, this could be what's wrong with you! Symptoms include:

  • feeling like everything around you is moving in circles; 
  • feeling nauseous when lying on your side; 
  • sensing motion that isn't there. 

This would also need to be confirmed through tests to rule out other causes such as brain tumor or stroke.

  • Nausea/upset Stomach

Nausea or an upset stomach can indicate many different problems ranging from food poisoning to inflammatory bowel disease.

How Long Does the Process Take for Me to Get Better After Drinking Stops? 

It depends on how long you've been drinking. If it's just a few months, then the process will take about two weeks or so. But if you've been drinking for years, then the process can take anywhere from six months to a year or longer.

Keep in mind that it all depends on how much alcohol was consumed and when it was last consumed.

Conclusion:

Alcohol and night sweats are a symptom of both alcohol withdrawal and other medical conditions. If you're experiencing these symptoms, it's important to get immediate treatment in order to stop the negative effects that night sweats can have on your health as well as those around you.

It takes anywhere from one week to six weeks for someone who is drinking heavily or has undergone an addiction recovery program before their body returns back to normal functioning levels when they cease using drugs or alcohol. Depending on what caused your night sweats initially, there may be additional treatments necessary outside of stopping drug use in order for them to go away completely.

The best thing to do is to seek medical help to properly diagnose and treat your night sweats.



Lead Writer/Reviewer : Kayla Loibl

Licensed Medical Health Professional 


Hello!

I am a Mental Health Counselor who is licensed in both New York (LMHC) and North Carolina (LCMHC). I have been working in the Mental Health field since 2015. I have worked in a residential setting, an outpatient program and an inpatient addictions program. I began working in Long Island, NY and then in Guelph, Ontario after moving to Canada. Read More



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