Sweating excessively usually happens during physical exertion (such as exercise) or when we are too hot. It's
the body's way of helping us to cool down. (The warm sweat reaches the body surface where it evaporates, taking heat away
from the body).
... We all know that we sweat during vigorous exercise and in high temperatures, but why do we sweat due to anxiety and
Anxiety and panic relate to danger. Our mind thinks we are going to get hurt and causes our body to respond appropriately.
It's the fight-or-flight response and it is initiated by adrenaline which increases our body's metabolism to prepare us for
action. This increase in metabolism produces heat.
We have to fight or run away.
To enable us to do this, our heartbeat speeds up to pump blood more quickly to the major muscle groups (arms, legs, chest)
to supply them with immediate energy to help us fight or flee. The increase in metabloism and energy production basically
makes us hotter inside and we sweat to cool down.
Adrenaline also stimulates the sweat glands to cool down any heat produced so even when we are only slightly anxious we
may sweat more. Many people experience 'sweaty palms' even though they are only mildly anxious.
ANXIETY SYMPTOMS AND 'FIGHT OR FLEE'
Physical anxiety symptoms result from the body re-directing resources to the major
muscle groups (legs / arms / chest) to provide them with an energy boost to prepare
us for action (ultimately to fight or flee).
* Our breathing becomes more rapid to get more oxygen for these muscles into the blood.
* Our heartbeat speeds up to get the blood to the muscles quicker.
* Blood is diverted from the brain (making us light-headed and dizzy) and the stomach (causing 'butterflies').
* Energy cannot be wasted processing any half-digested food in our system so we need to get rid of it quickly - either through the mouth
(feelings of nausea) or the other end (wanting to go to the toilet).
* Other 'energy-wasting ' systems (unnecessary in time of danger) are shut down eg. saliva production, giving us a dry mouth and difficulty
* We sweat more to cool down all this energy production.
* The energy boost to the muscles makes them 'jumpy'/ 'jittery'/ 'jelly-like'/ on-edge ready for action.