The Causes of Diaphoresis, How to Prevent and What to Do When You Have It

The Causes of Diaphoresis, How to Prevent and What to Do When You Have It

If you suspect that your excessive sweating might have a medical cause, read on to learn everything you need to know about diaphoresis, including what it is, what causes it, and how to prevent and treat it.

The confusing thing about excessive sweating conditions is that it’s hard to know when you have one. After all, everybody sweats. On a hot day or during a workout, you’ll even see the people around you soaking their shirts and dripping from their foreheads. But if you experience this level of sweating on a normal day, without an obvious cause, you might actually be experiencing the symptoms of a condition called diaphoresis. 

If you suspect that your excessive sweating might have a medical cause, read on to learn everything you need to know about diaphoresis, including what it is, what causes it, and how to prevent and treat it.

The Causes of Diaphoresis, How to Prevent and What to Do When You Have It

What is Diaphoresis?

Diaphoresis is a condition in which individuals sweat an abnormal amount relative to the temperature and their physical activity level. It is also known by a second name, secondary hyperhidrosis. In both primary and secondary hyperhidrosis, individuals sweat so much that they might soak through their clothes, drip off their fingers, and experience severe self-consciousness. 

But in contrast to primary hyperhidrosis, a condition with no known causes that is suspected to be hereditary, diaphoresis is usually a symptom of an underlying health condition. Further, primary hyperhidrosis usually tends to be localized to certain parts of the body, like the hands and feet, whereas diaphoresis affects the entire body. 

Do you often experience sweating through your clothes? Try Social Citizen’s sweat proof Social Tee to stay dry and fresh all day.  

What Causes Diaphoresis

While it is true, as we mentioned above, that diaphoresis is usually a symptom of a different health condition, there is actually a wide variety of potential causes. For this reason, a doctor is your best bet in helping you figure out what might be causing your diaphoresis. It may be one of the following conditions, or it could be something different entirely.


Sweating is often an early sign of low blood sugar, which can be associated with diabetes. 


One of the side effects of pregnancy is a significant increase in your metabolism, which increases your body temperature, potentially causing you to sweat more. The weight gain associated with pregnancy can also have the same effect.


85% of women in menopause and perimenopause experience sweating and hot flashes, especially at night, due to fluctuating hormones that send false signals to the brain that your body is overheated.


When your thyroid gland is hyperactive, it speeds up your metabolism, which can lead to heavy sweating. 


Certain types of cancer are associated with diaphoresis. These include:

  • Lymphoma
  • Leukemia
  • Bone cancer
  • Carcinoid tumors
  • Liver cancer


An immediate and severe allergic reaction, anaphylaxis can cause extreme sweating. 

Withdrawal from drugs or alcohol

People who stop drinking alcohol or taking drugs after a physical dependency often experience profuse sweating. 


There are many drugs whose side effects include diaphoresis. These include certain pain medications, chemotherapy drugs, antidepressants, and hormonal medicines.

How to Prevent Diaphoresis

How to Prevent Diaphoresis

Because diaphoresis is caused by another health condition, there isn’t much that can be done to prevent it other than to maintain good general health. Instead, the focus should be on finding an underlying cause and taking care of it accordingly. And if you can’t entirely eliminate your sweating by addressing the underlying cause, it’s a good idea to try to manage the symptom of excessive sweating with the various treatment options available to you. 

How to Treat Diaphoresis

Treatment for diaphoresis will depend on the cause. Below, we’ve listed some options that might work depending on why you are experiencing diaphoresis in the first place.

General Treatment of Diaphoresis 

While it isn’t made for use on the entire body, a clinical-strength antiperspirant can be incredibly helpful for controlling sweating in areas like the underarms. The active ingredient aluminum chloride works by plugging the sweat glands and stopping the release of sweat.

Another option that many people swear by is Botox injections, which can provide short-term relief. This works by blocking the nerve signals responsible for sweating, reducing the activity of the sweat glands. 

One more treatment is called iontophoresis. This is a procedure that uses an electrical current to reduce sweating on the hands and feet. Treatments take around 15 to 30 minutes each, and you typically have to repeat them several times a week until you see results.

Medications for Diaphoresis

There are also medications that can help diaphoresis. These are called anticholinergic medications and they block the action of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Included in this category are glycopyrrolate, oxybutynin, benztropine, and propantheline, and they tend to work quite well for diaphoresis. 

Again, it’s important to note that every case of diaphoresis is quite different. You and your roommate could both have it, but each of you has completely different causes and requires different treatment plans. So that’s why it’s so important to see a doctor if your suspect you have diaphoresis, especially because some of the possible causes of this condition are quite serious diseases. 

How Social Citizen Sweat Proof T-Shirts Can Help You

In addition to medical treatments and medications, there are also lifestyle modifications that can make diaphoresis much more manageable. One of the most helpful things you can do is change the clothes you wear. Generally speaking, loose, layered clothing made of natural fibers is the best way to go.

And if you really want the best tool in the fight against excessive sweating, you have to get yourself a sweat proof shirt like Social Citizen’s Social Tee. These are designed specifically for people like you to help you stay dry, cool, and fresh all day even as you sweat. Made with a specially-designed and discreet underarm pad, the Social Tee is 100% guaranteed to stop all sweat stains. There is also anti-microbial bamboo in the pad to help stop odors, so you can get through your day confident and comfortable. Check out the Social Tee in three stylish colors today.

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