Excessive Sweating

Excessive sweating, or hyperhidrosis, is a condition characterized by overabundant sweating, typically in the hands, underarms, and feet. People with hyperhidrosis often perspire excessively for no apparent reason.

The severity of hyperhidrosis varies from person to person, but it many cases it can be problematic both socially and professionally. Excessive sweating can sometimes interfere with daily activities such as driving, writing, or grasping objects.

Cause

In people with hyperhidrosis, the sympathetic nervous system, which controls involuntary body functions such as sweating, blushing, or salivation, fails to control perspiration. Excessive sweating may also occur in people with abnormally large sweat glands, thyroid conditions, or other medical problems. Certain medications may also contribute to extreme sweating.

Treatment

In cases were excessive sweating is the result of a thyroid condition or other medical problem, treating the underlying condition is often effective at treating the hyperhidrosis. 

Non-surgical treatments for hyperhidrosis include some oral medications or procedures such as Botox injections, which is very effective in suppressing the symptoms. Antiperspirants containing aluminum chloride can also help control extreme sweating, but must be applied daily.

In severe cases, surgery can be employed to remove the sweat glands or sever the nerve that stimulates excessive sweating.