Chances are if you are a woman of a certain age this issue has suddenly become a problem for you. If you live with that woman I've just described then you too know just how badly "night sweats" can not only disrupt your partner's ability to sleep but by close association, they can disrupt yours too.

Sleep Problem
rosliothman, ThinkStock
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So, what causes night sweats? Menopause is the biggie. For many women going through that change in life, the hot flashes associated with the change are more noteworthy and disruptive at night. That's the night sweats that are easy to explain. However, not everyone who deals with night sweats is going through menopause and not everyone is a woman either.

As you might imagine your diet and physical activity have a lot to do with what your body does while you sleep. Many times excessive sweating at night is caused by the food you eat and what time you ate it. You see your body burns energy digesting your food so if you eat right before bedtime you have literally "fired up your internal furnace" just in time for your head to hit the pillow.

mactrunk/ThinkStock
mactrunk/ThinkStock
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Other contributing factors to night sweats include alcohol consumption, certain medications, or even anxiety disorders. Just because you're sleeping doesn't mean your body is taking the night off. It's got stuff to do and sometimes that causes the body to sweat.

The changes in diet and mealtimes are things you can control. The hormonal issues are not really up to your description however you could speak with your doctor about hormone therapies that might offer some symptom relief.

Or, you could try a product that many sleep experts are raving about. It's called a cooling pillow and it's less about cooling than it is about drawing heat away from your head and your body. Think of those "cool gel mattresses" that are all the rage now. It's the same concept but only in pillow form.

Ugg Girl, Flickr
Ugg Girl, Flickr
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There are several varieties of cooling pillows you might look into. In fact, you might want to go all the way and find a mattress with cooling gel scattered throughout. This could help keep you cooler by drawing heat away from your entire body and not just your head.

A couple of other suggestions of note in staying cool in the sheets. Contrary to popular opinion sheets with a lower thread count will actually help keep you cooler at night. The high thread count sheets might feel better but when you're sweating who is counting threads, right?

You might also want to attempt to keep your bedroom cooler than the rest of your house. You can do that with blackout curtains or by adding a fan or ceiling fan if you don't already have one. You'll need to make sure the blades are spinning in the right direction to move cool air over you and not recirculate warmer air from near the ceiling.

See it is possible to stay cool and not sweat without running up the power bill by running the air conditioner all night and you're family members won't have to wear sweatpants and sweatshirts to bed just to stay warm while living in the same house with you.

Now, if you find yourself not sweating enough, you could always try these.

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