Excessive armpit sweating, also known as hyperhidrosis, affects as many as 7.8 million Americans, reports Saint Louis University’s Dee Anna Glaser, M.D. In her presentation to the International Hyperhidrosis Society, Dr. Glaser states that statistics further show that those who suffer from excessive armpit sweating are 72 percent less confident, while 95 percent of sufferers note that excessive sweating interferes with their daily lives. Those who suffer from this often embarrassing condition can find help by talking to their doctors and dermatologists to find a solution that works.
Try a clinical-strength antiperspirant. Deodorants only mask or prevent the odor of sweat, while antiperspirants are effective in stopping the sweat altogether. Antiperspirants work by plugging the pores that create the sweat. An antiperspirant made up of at least a 10 to 15 percent aluminum chloride hexahydrate concentrate will help stop excessive sweating, suggests the International Hyperhidrosis Society. Try applying it at night so the antiperspirant has time to sink into the pores in preparation for the next day.
Invest in natural fiber clothing options that allow your skin to breathe. Wearing constrictive clothing made of synthetic fibers like polyester can make your sweating problem worse, especially under the arms, notes the Mayo Clinic. Switch to wearing cotton or clothes especially made to wick away sweat quickly so that you stay dry.
Make an appointment with your dermatologist to talk about Botox injections. The U.S. National Library of Medicine notes that botulinum toxin type A is FDA approved to treat excessive underarm sweating. Injections directly in the underarm block the nerves that perpetuate sweating. Botox injections last for about six months at a time and can be painful, but are well worth it to stop embarrassing excessive armpit sweating.
Talk to your doctor about the possibility of taking oral medication to stop excessive armpit sweating. The American Academy of Dermatologists notes medications like glycopyrrolate and propantheline bromide stop the stimulation of sweat glands so that you stay dry. Beta blockers like propranolol can help lower stress-related sweating as well. Your doctor should explain to you the pros and cons of any oral medications before you agree to them.
Discuss surgery as a means of stopping extremely excessive armpit sweating that is interfering with your quality of life. Surgical options include the removal of sweat glands, as well as blocking nerve signals to the sweat glands. It’s important to note that these types of procedures are irreversible, warns the International Hyperhidrosis Society. They should be discussed extensively with your doctor before making the decision to proceed.
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