A certain amount of sweating is normal and we all suffer from this. However, when it is severe sweating that cannot be controlled by simple antiperspirant, then it is called hyperhidrosis
It can be very embarrassing and affect one’s confidence whilst at work and socially. The condition is often made worse once the person starts thinking about the sweating which then creates an anxiety loop which actually then makes the sweating more profuse. Showering regularly does not help and most over the counter remedies whilst ok for some people do not work for the more severe sweating.
Underarm and armpit sweating are annoying for patients who want to wear lighter coloured clothes as the damp patches show up.
Until recently the only treatments that were available are driclor which is an aluminium based deodorant that can help in some cases but often causes skin irritation. Luckily for people there are now botox injections for sweating that stop underarm wetness for 6-7 months. See botox for sweating.
Hyperhidrosis – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis
Hyperhidrosis is a disease characterized by perspiration in excess of the physiologic amount necessary to maintain thermal homeostasis. Primary or idiopathic hyperhidrosis and secondary hyperhidrosis are the two main categories. Patients can have excessive sweating either in a localized area (focal) or over the entire body (generalized). Primary disease is usually focal, affecting the soles, palms, and axillae in various combinations and with varying degrees of severity. Secondary hyperhidrosis can be generalized or focal. In secondary hyperhidrosis the symptoms are due to one of a large number of medical conditions, including endocrine disorders, neurological problems and the use of certain drugs.
Hyperhidrosis can have very significant effects on patients’ lives, causing physical discomfort and social embarrassment and negatively impacting occupational and daily activities.
If you suffer from excessive sweating, chances are that you suffer every day. You may constantly worry about how much you’re sweating. You may spend hours each day dealing with sweat – changing clothes, “freshening up”, wiping, placing napkins or pads under your arms or in your pockets, bathing, and hiding under dark-colored, bulky clothes. You may have lost friends and opportunities because of extremely sweaty palms, feet, or armpits. Afraid of what people will think, you may even make excuses to stay home, or choose careers in which you don’t have to interact with people, shake hands, or give presentations. Emotional problems, including depression, social isolation, and decreased confidence, can result. In addition to psychological troubles, excessive sweating can also cause painful or irritating skin problems, such as bacterial or fungal overgrowth, infections, and disintegration (also called maceration) of the skin.
From physical discomfort, to anxiety, embarrassment, and the stress of always hiding your sweat from others, hyperhidrosis can impact nearly all aspects of your life.
To gauge how much the sweating problems affect your day to day life have a look at some questions we regularly ask our patients to see if they qualify for medication or botox injections.
- How many times per day do you think or worry about sweating?
- How many times per day do you change clothes? Bathe?
- Do you carry “supplies” (such as pads, extra clothes, napkins, powders, antiperspirants, or towels) to help you manage your sweat?
- How often do you have to purchase new clothing or shoes? Do you find that you make such purchases more frequently than other people?
- How many minutes or hours per day do you spend “dealing” with sweat?
- Have you tried any topical solutions (antiperspirants, powders, or deodorants) designed to control sweating? If yes, how many different types?
- Do you ever change your social plans due to excessive sweating or fear of excessive sweating?
- Have you ever damaged reading or writing material, artwork, paperwork, a musical instrument, or an electric or metallic device due to sweating?
- Does excessive sweating affect your work performance or career choices?
- Have you experienced skin irritation or infections due to excessive sweating or your attempts to manage excessive sweating?
- Does sweating in public cause you distress?
- When you are in a situation involving contact with other people, or when you think about such a situation, do you experience sweating?
- Have you ever lost friends or a job due to excessive sweating?