What are the causes of excessive sweating?
Excessive sweating or Hyperhidrosis or Polyhidrosis is an abnormal condition that is characterized by abnormal sweating that affects just a specific part or the whole body. Hyperhidrosis may be present from birth but; in most cases, excessive sweating starts during a person’s teenage years. Although this condition does not prove fatal to our body, sweat patches can be quite uncomfortable making one embarrassed and causing psychological trauma.
What is Hyperhidrosis or excessive sweating?
- The latter is when you experience a lot of sweat despite not engaging in any activity that could be its cause.
- Primary Focal Hyperhidrosis – When excessive sweating affects one specific region in our body such as hands, legs, palms, soles, armpits, etc. For example, excessive sweating of the palms and soles is known as Palmoplantar Hyperhidrosis. This problem is not classified as medically serious.
- Secondary General Hyperhidrosis – When excessive sweating affects the entire body and more often than not has a serious underlying issue it is highlighting.
How many types of Hyperhidrosis are there?
Excessive sweating can either be because of a minor dysfunction in a person’s nervous system or a more critical reason. According to it, there are two types of Hyperhidrosis that can be found which are as follows:
- Primary Hyperhidrosis – Also known as ‘Idiopathic Hyperhidrosis’, it has no definite causes.
- Secondary Hyperhidrosis – Due to an underlying health condition, like a tumor, obesity or gout, etc. the person sweats too much.
- Reports released by the International Hyperhidrosis Association says that almost 2.8 percent of all the Americans are affected by hyperhidrosis. For some excessive sweating results in anxiety and discomfort. The person’s career choices, personal life, self-image and also the emotional well-being may also get affected.
What are the Symptoms?
- The palms of the hands will feel sweaty.
- The soles of the feet release extra sweat.
- There is frequent sweating all over the body.
- The sweat is enough for it to soak through clothes and be easily noticeable.
What are the Side Effects of Hyperhidrosis?
- Painful and irritating skin problems led by bacterial and fungal infections.
- The person tends to worry about clothes getting stained with sweat.
- Reluctance to make any type of physical contact.
- Self-conscious and socially withdrawn behavior.
- A large part of the day will be spent on cleaning and washing hands, feet, arms, face, etc.
- An increase in body odor.
What are the causes of Primary Hyperhidrosis?
- Earlier it was thought that the causes primarily include the mental and emotional state of a person. But, now after recent researches, this myth has been busted. Now it’s the other way around. All the mental and emotional instabilities experienced by patients having hyperhidrosis are because of excessive sweating.
- Studies have shown that certain genes could be one of the reasons for excessive sweating. Therefore, there is a higher chance of facing this problem by inheriting it as it is passed on from generation to generation.
What are the causes of Secondary Hyperhidrosis?
The causes of excessive sweating or secondary hyperhidrosis include:
- Alcohol abuse
- Any kind of heart disease
- Respiratory failure
- A certain type of cancer such as the Hodgkin’s Disease
- Any type of infections like HIV, Tuberculosis or Malaria etc.
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Injury to the spinal cord
- Any form of substance abuse
What are the natural remedies?
- Use of antiperspirants: Perfumes or deodorants don’t inhibit sweating, but these do. Using antiperspirants will help as they include aluminum chloride which acts as a plug for the pores.
- Using armpit shield: These are pads that are worn under the armpits to prevent your outfit from getting drained in sweat.
- Avoid using synthetic fibers: There are various types of synthetic and nylon fibers that will just worsen the whole situation. Therefore, it is always recommended to use fibers like cotton. Wearing loose clothing helps as well.
- Using the right shoes: Shoes which are made up of natural leather should be your preferred choice if you suffer from excessive sweating in your feet. Any kind of synthetic materials may again worsen the symptoms.
- Wearing the right kind of socks: Certain socks are very good at absorbing moisture. Such socks are thick, soft and therefore are made of natural fibers.
In case the symptoms persist even after the home remedies have been tried and tested, consulting a licensed medical practitioner is the best course of cation and should be followed without any delay.