With the temperatures heating up in Palm Beach County, there is no better time to talk about sweating!
Sweating affects everyone, from babies to the elderly. Some people sweat a little, and others sweat a lot. Those who sweat a lot may find it actually affects their day-to-day life. For example, they may only wear dark-colored clothing so that sweat marks don’t show, or shy away from making friends, or may even have difficulty doing manual tasks like writing. If any of this describes you or someone you know, read on for more information! Help is one dermatologist-visit away!
I Sweat A lot More Than Other People. Do I Have A Condition?
People who experience excessive sweating may have a condition called Hyperhidrosis. This condition typically affects the armpits, hands, feet or the face. Very rarely does it affect the entire body. Hyperhidrosis is estimated to affect 5% of the U.S. population and will often cause extreme social discomfort. Understandably so, sweat can be very embarrassing, frustrating and physically uncomfortable.
What Causes Hyperhidrosis?
Everyone has sweat glands all over the body. Our body uses sweat evaporation as a cooling mechanism. In patients with hyperhidrosis, these sweat glands are over-stimulated by the body’s autonomic nervous system. The sweat glands themselves are perfectly normal—their size and their number are the same as a person without hyperhidrosis. It’s simply an issue with overstimulation.
Is It Dangerous?
Hyperhidrosis that is both symmetrical and focal makes up more than 90% of the patients that we see. These patients have symmetric sweating, for example, of both armpits, or both palms, or both soles.
Researchers think that this condition is not harmful, and may be genetically inherited. However, sweating that is asymmetrical or generalized, may be more concerning. We recommend seeing a board-certified dermatologist if you have this second type of sweating because it can be due to many reasons including infection, cancer, hormone disorders, or even medications that you are taking.
While the overwhelming majority of hyperhidrosis cases that we see in our office are not dangerous, the emotional impact of hyperhidrosis can be severe. Many studies have shown that people with hyperhidrosis suffer from depression and anxiety, and face obstacles in establishing social and intimate relationships. These challenges are especially devastating because most hyperhidrosis symptoms start in the teenage to young adulthood years, ages 14 to 25.
How Can Hyperhidrosis Be Treated?
Yes! There are so many treatments available for hyperhidrosis! Treatment oftentimes depend on what body areas are affected.
The most commonly recommended treatment is an antiperspirant called Drysol which has prescription strength 20% aluminum chloride. Aluminum chloride prevents sweat from reaching the skin by binding to it in the sweat glands.
Another treatment that is quickly gaining popularity is Qbrexza, which is a wipe that contains glycopyrronium, an ingredient that reduces nerve stimulation to the sweat gland. Both Drysol and Qbrexza are applied once daily to the affected area.
For those whose sweating is not controlled by the above two options, botulinum toxin (Botox) injections may be a great alternative. Botox works by blocking the nerve signals from reaching the sweat gland. Many of my patients’ love getting Botox armpit injections because it works well and lasts for four to six months.
Hyperhidrosis Treatment Near Me
All these treatment options—Drysol, Qbrexza, and Botox—are usually fully or partially covered by insurance. Come see one of our board-certified dermatologists to find out more information about these and many other treatment options.
You should love the skin you’re in; and we can help! Call our office at 561-364-7774 to schedule a consultation at one of our two Palm Beach County locations today.