By Adrian Bryant

7 Ways to Treat Hyperhidrosis (Excessive Sweating)

Hyperhidrosis Excessive Sweating

1. Lifestyle Changes

While simple lifestyle changes can't cure this condition, it is possible to reduce the impact of its symptoms.


2. Antiperspirants

It's also a good idea to use an antiperspirant, rather than a deodorant. If you're already using an antiperspirant and it doesn't seem to help, talk to your doctor. He might be able to prescribe a stronger one than what you're likely to find at the store.

Many antiperspirants for hyperhidrosis contain aluminum chloride since it's effective at plugging sweat glands. These are usually applied at night and washed off in the morning.

While it has been known to cause mild irritation, applying it less frequently can provide some relief. It may also help to use moisturizers

3. Anticholinergics

Your doctor might also prescribe an anticholinergic. This type of medication blocks the effects of acetylcholine, which is the chemical the body uses to activate its sweat glands. Anticholinergics are available both in tablet form and as solutions you can apply directly.

While most anticholinergics were not specifically intended to treat hyperhidrosis, many patients insist they help. Side effects may include dry mouth, blurred vision, stomach cramps and constipation.

4. Botox

Another treatment option involves Botox (botulinum toxin) injections. Although it is a poison, it's been used to treat wrinkles, chronic headaches and muscle spasms. Most recently, it's been used to treat excessive underarm sweating.

Treatment involves injecting Botox into the tissues of the affected area with a small needle. In most cases, relief is noticeable within 2 to 4 days and lasts for about six months.

While the FDA has approved the use of Botox for underarm sweating, it has not yet been approved it for use in hands and feet (at the time of this writing). This is largely due to side effects involving pain and temporary muscle weakness.

5. Iontophoresis

Unlike Botox, iontophoresis was created specifically to treat hyperhidrosis.

While the individual being treated may experience some tingling, the current isn't strong enough to cause pain. Side effects of iontophoresis are fairly mild and may include irritation, dryness or peeling of the skin.

In most cases, these issues can be treated with moisturizing creams. The devices used for treatment are available with a doctor's prescription.

6. Anxiety Treatment

While anxiety isn't directly responsible for causing hyperhidrosis, it can make the problem worse, resulting in a vicious cycle. For example, a person who feels self-conscious in social situations can experience anxiety when meeting new people.

If they already have a problem with hyperhidrosis, the anxiety is likely to make it worse → 100 Ways to Deal with Stress

In these types of cases, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) may provide some help. While it won't cure the hyperhidrosis, it may reduce its effects. This is preferable to taking medication for anxiety since the medications could make the sweating worse.

7. Surgical Procedures

In a small number of cases, hyperhidrosis becomes so severe surgery is recommended. Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy (ETS) is the most common type of surgery for this condition. In most cases, it's used for problems affecting the armpits or hands.

As with other procedures, there are complications to consider.

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