Why Does Anxiety Cause Sweaty Palms?

The Physical Symptoms Associated with Anxiety

Most people will experience some degree of anxiety on a day-to-day basis. Say you get stuck in traffic and you have an important meeting to make, or you have to give a speech in front of a large group of people and you’ve never been very good at public speaking. Circumstances like these might cause anxiety – but the anxiety will subside once the event has passed, and you will be able to go on living without much of a second thought. Men and women who suffer from diagnosable anxiety disorders, on the other hand, experience severe anxiety daily, and they are crippled by the associated symptoms.

The feelings of intense fear that they experience become completely overwhelming, and prevent them from completing menial tasks or fulfilling personal obligations. Anxiety disorders have a major negative impact on the lives of the sufferers until they are effectively treated – but they can almost always be effectively treated, usually with a combination of intensive psychotherapy and medication. If you have been suffering from an undiagnosed or untreated anxiety disorder, you might be wondering what steps you can take to get the help you need. First of all, you must receive an official diagnosis from a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist. While this licensed professional will be able to tell you definitively whether or not you are suffering from a diagnosable anxiety disorder, there are several physical symptoms you can look for that might indicate a diagnosis is in order.

Sweaty Palms Are a Symptom of Anxiety

Some of the more common physical symptoms associated with anxiety include:

  • Persistent headaches
  • Drowsiness and fatigue
  • Insomnia and other sleep-related issues
  • Racing heartbeat or a pounding heart
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hyperventilation
  • Upset stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Abnormally frequent urination
  • Profuse sweating
  • Body tremors and twitches
  • Panic attacks
  • Sweaty palms

While there are many physical symptoms associated with severe anxiety disorders, sweaty palms are experienced by almost everyone who has a diagnosable anxiety disorder, whether it is mild, moderate, or severe.

Anxiety and Sweaty Palms

Why does anxiety cause sweaty palms and cold, clammy hands? When an individual begins to experience anxiety of any degree, a big part of his or her sympathetic nervous system begins overreacting, essentially going into overdrive. The sympathetic nervous system instigates quite a few physical symptoms associated with anxiety, including sweaty palms, shaking or trembling hands, dry mouth, and a racing heartbeat. If you are struggling with anxiety and you have been dealing with persistently sweaty palms, you likely want this issue taken care of. Not only are the physical symptoms associated with anxiety uncomfortable, but sometimes like sweaty palms can be embarrassing if you have to interact with other people (like shaking hands upon meeting someone, for example). Some of the tools used to prevent hands from sweating include:

  • Anti-anxiety medications
  • Individual counseling that revolves around stress reduction techniques
  • Prescription antiperspirants

Of course, dealing with the issue at its root cause is always the most effective. This means treating anxiety to prevent all of the associated symptoms from occurring.

Recovery for Anxiety Disorders

At Voices of Mental Health, we are dedicated to providing men and women who struggle with mental health conditions like anxiety with the information and resources they need to get started on the road to recovery. We understand just how disruptive anxiety can be to day-to-day life because most of our staff members have either overcome anxiety disorders themselves or helped loved ones overcome some degree of mental illness. This allows us to offer a unique, compassionate insight, and we consistently treat our clients with nothing but the utmost respect. If you have any questions about the physical symptoms associated with anxiety, or about how to effectively overcome these symptoms, simply reach out to us today. We are always standing by to help in any and every way possible.

Medically Reviewed: September 25, 2019

Dr Ashley

Cayla Clark, BA

Medical Reviewer

Chief Editor

All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.

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Dr Ashley Murray obtained her MBBCh Cum Laude in 2016. She currently practices in the public domain in South Africa. She has an interest in medical writing and has a keen interest in evidence-based medicine.

All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.