Excessive sweating of different parts of the body is medically known as hyperhidrosis. This disorder affects many people around the world and is a cause of a lot of distress and embarrassment. Hyperhidrosis affects different parts of the body and while some individuals experience excessive armpit sweating, in others excessive sweating affects the face, palms or soles. Underarm hyperhidrosis develops around puberty. Even though the problem may seem hard to deal with, excessive sweating can be eventually brought under control thanks to different treatment options.
Causes of Excessive Armpit Sweating
In spite of sometimes being connected with other underlying conditions such as neurologic, metabolic and some systemic disorders, excessive armpit sweating most commonly affects otherwise healthy individuals.
The problem may be closely related to heat and is also potentially triggered by emotions. Still, some people tend to sweat uncontrollably regardless their mood of weather conditions.
Excessive Armpit Sweating: Treatment
There are several treatments for excessive armpit sweating, some of which are highly effective.
Once the condition is confirmed, patients are first suggested to try some of many available over-the-counter antiperspirants. In case these fail to provide with desirable results, people suffering from armpit hyperhidrosis may start applying prescription-strength antiperspirants. Highly efficient antiperspirants contain aluminum chloride hexahydrate. Such antiperspirants are applied 7-10 nights in a row, before going to bed. After that they must be applied once per week in order to maintain their efficacy. The substance may sometimes cause irritation.
Further treatment options include iontophoresis and sometimes oral medications such as anticholinergics. Iontophoresis is a procedure during which an electrical current is conducted to the skin with the assistance of water. The effect is reduced production of sweat. The person must undergo several sessions in order to achieve positive effects. Anticholinergics are serious drugs and are not quite often recommended in individuals suffering from hyperhidrosis because of many potential side effects (dry mouth, insomnia, blurred vision etc.).
More invasive approaches for excessive armpit sweating include Botox injections and surgery. Botox injections are applied directly into the armpits. The toxin is injected into approximately 20 spots in each armpit and its effects remain for several months.
And finally, in patients who have not managed to deal with excessive armpit sweating with any of the previously mentioned approaches, surgery is the only thing that may help. Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy (ETS) is a surgical procedure during which the sympathetic nerves in charge with sweating are interrupted. This results in a significant decrease if not complete cessation of sweating of certain parts of the body. Prior opting for the surgery, patients are due to get fully informed about the outcome and potential risks and complications of the surgery.