Do you suffer from the problem of excessive sweating or medically termed as hyperhidrosis? You can understand how embarrassing the situation can be.
You could be sitting in the middle of an important business meeting when you suddenly see that your underarms are full of sweat. You are sitting at a coffee shop with your friends and your armpits suddenly get damp. You always have that slight prickling feeling of sweat.
But did you know that approximately 2% of the world’s population suffers from the problem of excessive sweating. Hyperhidrosis is a condition in which a certain parts of the body sweat beyond the physiological needs of the body.
In this article, you will get thorough and comprehensive information about the symptoms, causes and treatments of hyperhidrosis. All the commonly asked questions and best treatments that you could use will be covered in the following article.
Symptoms of hyperhidrosis
The typical identification of excessive sweating in the hand or feet is the abandoned appearance of sweat. It can occur at any point of time without any reason. Generally, patients do not suffer from the problem of sweating when they are sleeping but only in their normal daily hours. It can have a negative impact on the functional and social life of a person. The levels of sweat differ from patient to patient but nonetheless the impact of its effects can be significant on the person suffering from it. The problem of sweating has no connection with a person’s habit of being anxious or active because a person can sweat even at times when the person is neither active nor anxious. This shows that the sympathetic nervous system is of an autonomous nature which is involuntary as compared to the motoric or sensory nervous systems which is voluntary.
Causes of excessive sweating
Hyperhidrosis is an inherited condition which affects those who suffer from it at an emotional, social and functional level. You should be happy about the fact that there are several different techniques that you can use to fight excessive sweating. Each treatment will have a varied effect depending on the severity of the problem.
Now, the basic cause which is responsible for excessive sweat and explains its presence is the sympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic chain is an autonomous portion of the nervous system which you cannot control. There are two parts of the autonomous nervous system – sympathetic and parasympathetic. These systems have an effect on your blood pressure, anxiety level and heart rate.
The areas which are commonly affected by hyperhidrosis are hands, feet and the armpits. A smaller group of patients suffer from the problem of sweat on the face and armpits. There have been different treatments for the affliction which include herbal medications, lotions, oral medications, or injections of botox.
There are some people who sweat in moments of stress which could be work related, financial stress, or exam stress. Some also sweat at night even when the fan is blowing cool air and there is no blanket. Others sweat only when they are in the heat. But how can you say that the amount of sweat you have is excessive? The simple explanation of excessive sweating is when it starts bothering you and causes stress. It generally starts in the adolescent age and usually occurs in the hands, feet and armpits. There are several different names given to hyperhidrosis depending on where the sweat appears:
Axillary hyperhidrosis: Armpit sweating
Palmoplantar hyperhidrosis: Sweating soles or palms
Treatments of excessive sweating
The cause is not as important for people as much is the treatment. Each person who experiences it does not want to know what triggers it but wants to find how to stop sweating. There are a number of different ways to control sweat.
The first technique that will help you fight sweat is powerful antiperspirants. Antiperspirants may work for a certain group of people but may not work for those whose excessive sweating is actually and really excessive. The degree of effectiveness may also vary from antiperspirant to antiperspirant. Some are more powerful than the others and have the ability to combat the problem of sweating. However, these are costlier than the others.
Antiperspirants may not work at all for a lot of people. This is because they do not have occurrence of sweat in the armpits but in different parts like the hands, feet, back or chest. These people should resort to oral medications. The medication for sweating on the hands is called anticholinergics. These medications are not preferred by all since they have side effects like blurred vision or a dry mouth.
Botox injections are also a technique to combat excessive sweating. In the under arms area, botox can help in closing sweat pores. But these injections are unpleasant since you need about 20 different ones per treatment. In addition, you need to go for repeated treatments in every 4 months.
The oldest method which has been used for about 50 years now is called Iontophoresis. In Iontophoresis, water is used to send a light electric current on the skin of the patient. It does not work long time but it will depend on how your body reacts to the treatment. You might have to go for repeat treatments thrice in a week and each session will take about 20 minutes.
The best treatments for any disease or any affliction are natural remedies. Hyperhidrosis can also be cured with natural treatments. One of the home remedies used is baking soda. A combination of cornstarch and baking soda could be applied under the arms and washed off with water after about half an hour. Baking soda can easily absorb excess moisture and thus, you will not be able to see any arm pit circles on your clothes. Adding some essential oils can work as a deodorizer. Remember, it is important to shave your underarms before you try this treatment.
All these methods can help you deal with sweat for a short period of time but they will not give you permanent relief.