Sweating is a natural phenomenon, but some of us sweat a little too much. 

Excessive sweating may lead to awkward situations where our hands, underarms, and other body parts literally get drenched in sweat. 

Hyperhidrosis, a condition in which your body’s sweat glands are hyperactive, is the medical term for excessive sweating. It may make you perspire at inconvenient times and places where other individuals wouldn’t.

In addition to the water that makes up the majority of your sweat, it also includes chloride, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

Additionally, your sweat glands begin to produce perspiration when your body temperature rises too high. The ideal temperature for your body is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (37 degrees Celsius).

The purpose of sweating is actually to help your body regulate its internal temperature, hydrate your skin, and maintain a healthy balance of fluids and electrolytes. 

What is hyperhidrosis?

Hyperhidrosis is a condition in which your body’s sweat glands overreact. You perspire a lot as a result of your excessive activity, often when and where other people wouldn’t.

Excessive sweating can occasionally be brought on by a health issue or emotion (such as worry). It might be difficult for many hyperhidrosis sufferers to control their symptoms.

Excessive sweating can affect the following areas:

  • Palms of your hands
  • Soles of your feet
  • Armpits
  • Face
  • Chest
  • Back
  • Groin area

What are the types of hyperhidrosis?

Primary hyperhidrosis: 

Primary hyperhidrosis, also known as focal or essential hyperhidrosis, is characterised by excessive sweating in the hands, feet, underarms, and face for no discernible reason.

Secondary hyperhidrosis:

Secondary hyperhidrosis, also known as generalised hyperhidrosis, is characterised by excessive perspiration that affects a greater portion of the body or the entire body. It can be brought on by extreme heat as well as by a medical condition or medicine.

What causes hyperhidrosis?

The causes of primary hyperhidrosis are

  • Certain odours and foods, including citric acid, coffee, chocolate, peanut butter and spices.
  • Emotional stress, especially anxiety.
  • Heat.
  • Spinal cord injury.

The causes of secondary hyperhidrosis are

  • Dysautonomia (autonomic dysfunction).
  • Heat, humidity and exercise.
  • Infections, such as tuberculosis.
  • Malignancies, such as Hodgkin’s disease (cancer of the lymphatic system).
  • Menopause.
  • Metabolic diseases and disorders, including hyperthyroidism, diabetes, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), pheochromocytoma (a benign tumor in the adrenal glands), gout and pituitary disease.
  • Severe psychological stress.

Why do some people sweat more?

  • Medications

You may perspire while taking some medications, including antidepressants, NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), blood pressure meds, and diabetic treatments. You can talk to your doctor about it if you believe this may be the problem.

  • Alcohol

Even one glass of alcohol can quicken your heartbeat and enlarge the blood vessels in your skin. It could make you perspire. Excessive perspiration and even nocturnal sweats are possible with alcohol withdrawal.

Drinking alcohol interferes with the neurological and endocrine systems’ ability to communicate. This disrupts hormones, which might result in sweating.

  • Weather 

We can all relate to those steamy, muggy summer days where even a little stroll outside leaves us drenched in perspiration. We are more likely to perspire in extreme heat. Furthermore, perspiration has a harder time evaporating from your body in the hot, humid air.

  • Exercise 

Your body temperature rises as you exercise and your heartbeat is raised. Your sweat glands are activated as a result, and you begin to perspire. While exercising, you could lose on average 2 liters of liquid. Water consumption is essential for replenishing lost fluids and cooling your body down before, during, and after an exercise avoiding dehydration

  • Anxiety 

Your sweat glands may be activated by stress chemicals. Your body temperature rises due to an increased heart rate  and blood pressure. Sweating on the palms of your hands and the bottoms of your feet might result from emotional tension.

  • Hormonal imbalance

You may have heard about hot flashes or maybe had them yourself. Your oestrogen levels fluctuate during menopause. This makes it challenging for your brain’s hypothalamus, which regulates temperature, to determine whether or not your body needs to be cooled down. The end effect is hot flashes because your body overworks its sweat glands since it believes it is overheated. You could feel clammy, overheated, and perspiring.

  • Caffeine and spicy foods

Sweating amounts might be influenced by what you eat and drink. Your central nervous system, which regulates your sweat glands, is activated by caffeine, including coffee and other caffeinated beverages. Your sweat glands can even be activated by spicy foods like hot sauce and jalapenos.

To balance it out and keep hydrated, you should drink two glasses of water for every cup of coffee you consume.

Final thoughts 

Due to excessive sweating, those with hyperhidrosis have difficulty in many social situations, making it a touchy subject for them. However, if you’ve tried several methods to control your excessive sweating, think about seeing a doctor.

There’s also no reason to be ashamed. To get over this wear light, breathable clothing and also focus on your water intake. Hyperhidrosis is a normal thing and the best you can do is to identify it and act on it at the right time. 

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q. What is the main reason for hyperhidrosis?

It is the result of a problem with part of the nervous system called the sympathetic nervous system.

Q. Is hyperhidrosis a mental disorder?

No, hyperhidrosis is not a mental disorder. 

Q. Does hyperhidrosis go away with age?

Yes, hyperhidrosis does seem to get better with age.

Q. How is hyperhidrosis diagnosed?

Hyperhidrosis can be diagnosed with the help of a sweat test. 

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