You may be suffering from hyperhidrosis, a condition that is defined by individuals who sweat more than the body would normally need to maintain optimal temperature.

While hyperhidrosis affects approximately 950,000 Canadians, only 38 percent of hyperhidrosis sufferers talk to a health care professional about their condition. People rarely seek help because many are unaware that excessive sweating is a treatable medical disorder.

Two types 

  • Focal hyperhidrosis, also known as primary hyperhidrosis, has an unknown cause. This type of hyperhidrosis is localized to one or more of the following areas:
  • Underarms (axillary hyperhidrosis)
  • Hands (palmar hyperhidrosis)
  • Feet (plantar hyperhidrosis)
  • Face (facial hyperhidrosis)

Although this type of hyperhidrosis has an unknown cause, the way it affects sufferers appears to be related to over-activity of the central nervous system thereby causing an overactive stimulation of local sweat glands.

Generalized hyperhidrosis, also known as secondary hyperhidrosis is actually caused by another underlying condition (e.g. endocrine disorders, menopause, obesity, nerve damage, and rarely, some types of drugs). This type of hyperhidrosis generally occurs over the whole body and is usually treated by addressing the underlying condition.

Many treatment options 

  • Topical treatments There are a variety of topical agents that can be used to treat hyperhidrosis, a common one being Drysol.
  • Iontophoresis is the passage of an electrical current onto the skin.
  • Botulinum toxin type A A neurotoxin injection that blocks the cholinergic stimulus of eccrine sweat glands.
  • Surgery Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (ETS) is a surgical procedure that can eliminate sweating in the hands and underarms.

In order to find the best treatment for you, speak to a dermatologist or sweat management specialist.