Excessive Sweating with Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

By Adrienne Dellwo, Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue Guide – Tuesday August 31, 2010

Do you find yourself dripping with sweat at odd times, for no apparent reason?  This is one of those bizarre, confusing symptoms of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome that you don’t see on those inadequate little symptoms lists. Doctors and researchers don’t really bother themselves with it because we have so many bigger problems, but when you have to deal with this every day it can have a big impact on your life. Here are some of the comments I’ve seen:

“What exactly causes the excessive sweating? Is it hormonal, side effect of all my meds? or a combo of both? I don’t bother to wear makeup in the summer because there is no point – it just melts off.”
“I have a problem that I have not seen yet..unexplained excessive sweating…like just stepping out of the shower…hair dripping wet..clothes…soaked! … It has put a big damper on my lifestyle.”
“My limbs get so cold and painful during that time, and yet my face will be sweating from the heat inside.”
“I can’t stand too much heat either, my heart starts beating too fast, and I sweat profusely. I can be sweaty and my skin too cold at the same time!”
“I sweat heavily – especially from my head and neck – from the least exertion.”

What Causes Excessive Sweating?

Several things could be responsible for our sweating, either on their own or in combination. They include:

The only cause that’s “curable” is the medication side effect, and that may not be an attractive option to you if the drug is doing more good than harm. This is one of those symptoms we have to either live with or find ways to manage.  One of the important things is to stay hydrated — replace both the water and the electrolytes you sweat out, because dehydration is really no fun.  And it can be hard for us to tell when we’re dehydrated because the symptoms can be similar to some we already have.  (You can find them here: Symptoms of Dehydration.)

My biggest sweat issue is on my forehead. It’s generally worst right after I get out of the tub or shower, and it can get ridiculous if I blow my hair dry right away. Sometimes it stops with a thorough wipe-down, but other times it just keeps coming. On those days, I have to wear a hat because the front of my hair will look horrible. I often carry a hat with me in the summer, in case the sweating starts again. I’ve tried antiperspirant on my forehead and in my hairline, but it does nothing to help.

I think mine comes from both heat sensitivity and autonomic dysfunction. My body seems to “hold on” to heat too much, and then my system can’t regulate itself properly to turn off the flow once it starts.

What triggers your sweating? Do you have an idea what causes it? Does anything help? Leave your comments below!

About Michelle Arbore

I am 36 years old, married for 8 years and have an almost 3 year old, Michael Richard. We also have two cats (Anibel & Mama). I own my own social media management and coaching business that allows me to work from home. I like to read, listen to music, take photos, learn new things, shop, watch TV and spend time with family and friends. I also suffer from Fibromyalgia. I have suffered from this disease for over 15 years now. I started my blog so I could have a place to vent about what I am feeling. It has turned into a place where I post information about this disease, talk about books that I am reading about Fibro, and getting to meet other people who suffer from this.
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9 Responses to Excessive Sweating with Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

  1. Martha says:

    I can’t believe that I have never googled my sweating problem. I was shocked to find out that it was my fibro. I sweat around my hairline and it is so embarrassing. I am going to talk to my Rheumatologist and hopefully she will have suggestions. I am so glad to know that I am not then ly suffering. thanks for all the info.

  2. Matt says:

    What worked for me was testing different antiperspirants and then sticking with what worked the best. We are all different, so just try a few and you should be ok ;) Don’t sweat :)

  3. Jason Ellis says:

    My sweating is triggered primarily by my anxiety and a general nervousness in front of others. However, I kind of think it’s an endless cycle. My nervousness causes the sweating and the sweating causes me to feel more nervous. I recommend something called the Bed Fan for anyone suffering from night sweats. It’s a huge help if your pillow and sheets are constantly wet from the excessive perspiration. Thanks for bringing this topic to light.

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  5. I have had excessive sweating since I started taking Savella. Or at least that’s what I think, anyway. It is horrible and can be embarrassing. But the Savella is doing so well, I don’t want to stop it. So I just put up with it. What more can one do?

  6. Alison says:

    I’ve heard that Botox injections can be helpful for people with excessive sweating. In fact, I just googled it and came up with this website: http://www.botoxseveresweating.com/ Apparently, it’s approved for underarm sweating, but you could probably use it off-label for other areas of the body. Here’s their explanation: “BOTOX injections temporarily block the chemical signals from the nerves that stimulate the sweat glands. When the sweat glands don’t receive chemical signals, the production of excessive sweat stops in the treated areas only. Sweat continues to be produced elsewhere.” It says the treatment (if it works, of course) lasts for six months on average. Of course, Botox injections are pretty expensive and there are lots of risks, especially if you don’t use a well-trained dermatologist. But at least it’s an option!

    You could also try a prescription antiperspirant; it might work better than the ones available over the counter. Finally, some kind of menthol/cooling product might help with heat-related forehead sweat — I use a ‘refreshing gel’ with witch hazel, camphor, and menthol for headaches and it definitely cools the area enough to keep me from sweating there. Plus it’s light enough that it doesn’t sting or burn like, say, Icy Hot (which I can’t use because it hurts my fibro-sensitive skin). If you can’t find one, you might look at foot gels/lotions with tea tree oil or other cooling agents. I also have these towelettes that use essential oils to cool your head, neck, shoulders, etc. When the effect starts to fade, you just splash a little water on the area to reactivate it. Those are nice and portable, too. Just some ideas to try!

  7. Debbie says:

    I have this happen to me too. I spent alot of time at home and I find if I have a fan runing near me helps. I never knew why this happened to me or that it could have something to do with the fibro. I read this and I just have to ask “What next” I was diagonsed 2 years ago but feel I have had fibro much longer. I had a Doctor who didn`t listen to what I was tell her. She was my Doctor for 13 years and I think much of those 13 years I had fibro. I`m sick of hurting all the time My husband doesn`t want to hear about it anymore but I know it will not go away and that I know I will have to deal with this forever. I understand the depression I understand that I`mnot who I was before I understand how I fought to still be myself but I am not that person anymore and mow I`m not sure just who I am anymore

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