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Yes, most of the time it's normal.
"It's very common for children to sweat while they're in a deep stage of sleep," says Jennifer Shu, a pediatrician and author of Baby and Child Health: The Essential Guide From Birth to 11 Years.
According to Shu, children are more likely than adults to sweat at night because they spend more time in deep sleep, their temperature regulation systems aren't as mature, and they have a higher proportion of sweat glands compared to their body size.
Even though your child is waking up in sweaty, damp pajamas, she may be entirely comfortable at night. On the other hand, your child might be sweating because she's too hot.
How can you tell the difference between an overheated child and a child with normal night sweating? An overheated child feels warm earlier in the night, before she reaches the deep sleep stage, says Shu.
So if your child is sweating earlier in the night, or if she complains about being too warm, adjust the temperature of her room and make sure she doesn't have too many blankets on her. Also, avoid overdressing her – one layer of pajamas is generally enough.
Night sweating can sometimes indicate a mild, temporary problem or a more serious medical condition. For example, a child with an infection might sweat as her body works to fight it off. And a child with sleep apnea, a disorder in which breathing stops repeatedly during sleep, may sweat as she works harder to get a breath.
The red flag to watch for is any additional symptoms that accompany your child's night sweats. "Watch for fever, snoring, gasping, pauses in breathing, and any symptoms of illness," says Shu. Also pay attention to whether she's in pain or fatigued during the day. If your child has one or more of these symptoms, or if you just want to make sure there's no cause for worry, call your child's doctor.
Otherwise, night sweating is just one of those things that will happen less often over time. As your child grows, she'll still sweat at night (everyone does), but she probably won't wake up drenched.