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Excessive Sweating Causes And Treatments

March 19, 2013

ImageWhy do I sweat so much? That’s a question millions of people ask every day. People who sweat excessively are suffering with a condition called hyperhidrosis. There are several causes of hyperhidrosis. It can indicate the person is suffering with diabetes or has an infection. Profuse sweating can also be a sign of thyroid problems. While overweight or out of shape people are more likely to suffer with excessive sweating, anyone can have symptoms of hyperhidrosis. Fortunately there are a number of effective treatments to help people overcome the ailment.

The key for people who have hyperhidrosis to get the right treatment is to see a doctor. The doctor can determine whether it is a serious medical issue that is causing the hyperhidrosis. Once the doctor ascertains the cause of the hyperhidrosis they can then select the appropriate course of treatment. Visiting the doctor when profuse sweating appears can also prevent people from having to unwittingly suffer much more serious risks and effects from a condition they aren’t aware they have.

There are two common types of excessive sweating. One is localized hyperhidrosis and the other is generalized hyperhidrosis. Localized sweating or primary focal hyperhidrosis is the more common of the two. It begins in the pre-teen years and is found in about 1% to 3% of the population. It is not a sign of disease. Experts are not sure what causes it. People with primary focal hyperhidrosis are otherwise healthy. They just sweat profusely in their face, feet, groin, hands, head and underarms.

Generalized sweating, or secondary general hyperhidrosis, is a less common form of hyperhidrosis and is characterized by sweating all over the body. This can be a sign of a serious medical condition. The excessive sweating usually occurs at night. It may be related to medical conditions including:

  • Alcoholism
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Heart Failure
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Menopause
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Pregnancy
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Stroke
  • Thyroid problems

General excessive sweating can be triggered by the use of certain medications. Psychiatric drugs, blood pressure medications, dry mouth medicines, antibiotics and some
supplements have been known to trigger this condition. Suffers should see their doctors if they have night sweats, generalized sweating, asymmetrical sweating, late onset sweating, sudden changes in the severity of the sweating or if the excessive sweating begins with the use of a new medication or is accompanied by coughing, fatigue, insomnia or increased thirst or urination.

There are a number of effective treatments for excessive sweating. For primary focal hyperhidrosis patients can use several special over-the-counter or prescription sprays, lotions, and roll-on antiperspirants. There are also several effective medications. Iontophoresis, herbal medications, Botox injections and surgery can also address the issue.

Treating secondary hyperhidrosis can be a little more complex. The treatment has to be based on the cause of the problem. Hyperhidrosis caused by thyroid problems can be treated with thyroid medication or surgery. If diabetes is the cause, controlling glucose levels will end the sweating. Should the excessive sweating be caused medication the doctor may be able to prescribe a different drug and this will eliminate the sweating.

There are also several surgical solutions which can help people who ask why do I sweat so much? Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (ETS) has been very effective in treating excessive sweating in the hands. The procedure is successful in 98-99% of cases. Lumbar Sympathectomy, a procedure in use since 2005, has a near 100% success rate in treating people who sweat excessively on their feet. For people who sweat excessively in their armpits Suction Curettage and Subdermal Laser Ablation have yielded an 85% success rate in curing the condition.

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