Hot and cold sweats commonly occur due to many reasons, including fear, shock, serious injury, breath shortness and heart attack. A cold sweat is not a health problem, but can be a symptom of an underlying issue.
A doctor will need to obtain the health history of a person in order to determine the main cause of excessive sweating. This is different from the sweating caused by putting on heavy clothes or a hot room. Some commonly known causes of excessive sweating include cancer, menopause, certain infections and idiopathic hyperhidrosis among others, as stated by WebMD. In some cases, the underlying cause must be treated in order for the excessive sweating to stop.