HIV and Night Sweats

The human body undergoes many changes while it attempts to fight off HIV. As time progresses and more research is done on HIV/AIDS, treatments are becoming better and more affordable. One thing that is still an untreatable discomfort, though, are night sweats.

Sweating is totally normal. The average person sweats about 1 quart of water each day, which is why it’s so important to drink 6-8 glasses of water daily. Night sweats are common in those who live with HIV, and are profuse sweats that occur during the night. They have a sudden and rapid onset, leaving you covered in and surrounded by sweat when you wake up.

Though they can be triggered from the HIV infection itself, they also may be a symptom of another infection. If you are waking regularly from night sweats for the first time since being diagnosed with HIV, consult with your doctor to be sure you don’t have a bacterial or fungal infection.

Though there are no cures for night sweats, there are many ways to deal with them. Vitamin E, ginseng, Vitamin C, magnesium and dong quai have proven effective in aiding menopausal women. Of course, you should check with your doctor before beginning any sort of herbal regimen to ensure it will not interact with your HIV medications.

Keep a cold compress or ice water and towel by your bedside to help you cool down when you awake from your night sweat. Be sure to use light materials for your pajamas, sheets and blankets. If your sweats are regular, take a cold shower or bath before bed in hopes of bringing your body temperature down.

Certain foods are known to trigger the sweats. Avoid alcohol, cigarettes and spicy foods before hitting the sheets to keep your sweats at bay.