There are several sleep related disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea that might be the root cause of your night sweats. The major reason behind this sudden perspiration is that every time you stop breathing or undergo apnea, your body slips into a condition called hyperdrive where it is literally fighting for air, thus getting heated up. Apart from this, another reason for night sweats among sleep apnea patients might be the fact that since you stop breathing intermittently, there is a lack of oxygen that triggers a fight or flight mode in your body and causes excessive sweating. A few other common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea include high blood pressure, excessive sleepiness in the daytime, waking up gasping for breath or choking.
If you are experiencing a premenopause or menopause, then your fluctuating estrogen levels might be the reason behind your night sweats. The hot flashes can last anywhere between one to five minutes and require you to even change your dripping clothes. So basically, when your estrogen levels drop, it sort of impacts the part of the brain that controls your core temperature. As a result of which, even small variations in the outside temperature might end up causing a major spike in your body temperature causing sweating.
Night sweats might also be indicative of some kind of cancer in its early stages. Lymphoma and Leukemia are the two types of cancer which are commonly associated with unexplained night sweats. Additionally, excessive night sweating may also be caused by a growth of adrenal tumors or carcinoid tumors in the body. However, the other cancer symptoms that might surface in conjunction with night sweats often include unexplained low grade fevers and weight loss. Alternatively, night sweats can also be associated with certain lines of treatment for cancer including hormone therapy that is frequently incorporated for the treatment of prostate or breast cancers.