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Excessive sweating or hyperhidrosis can cause embarrassment, particularly when present in the armpits or palms. It can have effects such as leaving unsightly wet patches under clothing and a reluctance to shake hands.

What causes excessive sweating?

It is natural to sweat in warm temperatures, during exercise or from emotional responses such as embarrassment, anger or fear. Excessive sweating is caused by the overactivity of the part of the brain that regulates temperature and sends a message to our two main sweat glands (the eccrine and apocrine) via our sympathetic nervous system. This message produces excess sweat in armpits, palms or feet. While the cause is not known, it may be triggered by anxiety, spicy food, an underlying medical condition, or other lifestyle health factors such as obesity.

What are the symptoms?

Hyperhidrosis or excess sweat normally occurs in the armpits, palms or soles of the feet. It is characterised by visible sweat stains on clothes, clammy palms or perspiration. It is not normally accompanied by a bad odour. Hyperhidrosis can have other psychological or social impacts such as a reluctance to shake hands or the need to change clothes during the day. It can either be localised (under the armpits or palms) or generalised (all over the body).

Who does it affect?

Hyperhidrosis usually begins in adolescence and may improve with age. Sometimes anxiety about sweating can cause a vicious cycle where worrying about sweating triggers the sweat glands.

How is it treated?

Injections performed by our Dermatologists can provide significant relief for patients struggling with excessive underarm sweating. We also offer treatment for excessive sweating of the hands and feet using a Iontophoresis device.

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