HYPERHIDROSIS – EXCESSIVE SWEATING CAN BE THE PITS
June 18, 2012 by guest
Like it or not all of us sweat, it’s part of being human, but if you are one of the almost 3% of the population with excessive sweating, it can take on an entirely new meaning. Excessive sweating, also known as hyperhidrosis, can be a debilitating disease for many of those who suffer from it. Hyperhidrosis can be generalized to the entire body, but most of the time it is localized to a specific area such as the hands, feet or armpits. “This is not run-of-the-mill simple sweating on a hot day we are talking about” Says Dr. Melinda Greenfield, Dermatologist and owner of the on line beauty store,
www.skincareanthology.com. “These patients will come into my office, turn over their hands, and sweat will literally drip out and form a puddle on the floor”. “These patients are finding it hard to get jobs, keep jobs, get relationships, utilize simple equipment, you name it” says Greenfield, “this can be a real disability for some”.
The cause of hyperhidrosis is unknown, but there are many diseases that may be associated with the symptoms of excessive sweating. If you have a sudden onset of this disease it’s always a good idea to consult your medical doctor. Primary hyperhidrosis generally starts in the early 20’s or even during the teenage years. “Approximately 20-50% of these patients have at least one family member with hyperhidrosis, which leads us to believe there is likely a hereditary component” says Greenfield. “When an older or middle-aged patient comes in with new onset hyperhidrosis, we are thinking about things like thyroid disease, diabetes, a variety of tumors; these patients need a thorough evaluation” says Dr. Greenfield.
Regarding treatments, there are a variety of options out there. Clearly the first step would be to make sure there is not another process or disease causing the symptoms of excessive sweating. Once that has been ruled out, treatments can be considered. “A variety of medications, topical agents, surgeries, and even Botox and hypnosis have been used to manage hyperhidrosis” says Greenfield. Depending on where the problem is occurring, a particular treatment may be considered. As a dermatologist, Dr. Greenfield always considers topical therapies first; her favorite place to start is with a prescription strength solution of Aluminum chloride. This is the same ingredient that is in a variety of over the counter antiperspirants, only a lot stronger. This product, known commercially as Drysol, is available for purchase at www.skincareanthology.com. Along with the purchase comes an instruction sheet explaining the proper use of the product. “This is not used like a regular antiperspirant, and knowing how to use it properly increases the efficacy significantly” says Greenfield.
Beyond the topical therapies, options such as Botox are becoming more popular, as well as a variety of surgical procedures. The important thing is for people to realize that there are options and suffering from this often debilitating condition may not be necessary.