Sweating is a normal process that helps the body to regulate its temperature.
When we sweat, we eliminate some toxic waste substances from our bodies.
However, some people experience excessive sweating, a condition known as hyperhidrosis. People that sweat more than normal find it discomforting.
Excessive sweating is very common, and it can affect the whole body or specific areas.
In this post, you’ll learn how to stop excessive sweating. Let’s dive in!
Causes of excessive sweating
The sweat glands are responsible for the production of sweat. There are two types of sweat glands, which are the eccrine glands and the apocrine gland.
The eccrine glands occur in most parts of the body. Overstimulation of these glands is the basic cause of excessive sweating.
According to researchers, about 5% of the United States population experience excessive sweating.
The underlying cause of an individual’s excess sweating depends on the type of condition they have.
People who have this type of hyperhidrosis often sweat on their feet, face, hands, and underarms.
These areas contain a large concentration of eccrine glands. Physicians aren’t exactly sure of the major causes of this type of condition.
However, research says that about 30 to 50 percent of people with primary hyperhidrosis have a family history of excessive sweating.
Therefore, this condition can be regarded as a hereditary one.
Underlying medical conditions cause this type of hyperhidrosis. It can also occur as a result of the side effects of some drugs.
This type of condition starts in adulthood. Sweating occurs all over the body or in certain areas. You could even sweat while you’re asleep.
Conditions that can cause secondary hyperhidrosis include the following:
- Heart disease
- Adrenal gland disorders
- Lung disease
- Parkinson’s disease
- Infectious diseases such as tuberculosis
Medications that can cause excessive sweating include:
- Serotonin inhibitors
- Dopamine agonists
Treatment for excessive sweating
There are several ways by which you can reduce the rate at which you sweat. Excessive sweating can get better as one ages, while some need medical attention.
1. Use Antiperspirants
Antiperspirants are preparations that are made to be applied on the skin to help block the sweat glands.
The zinc and aluminum compounds present in antiperspirants block the pores of the body from releasing sweat.
If you sweat a lot and use deodorants, then an antiperspirant will be a good substitute.
Deodorants don’t stop the sweating; they only mask the smell produced when we sweat.
Antiperspirants are available over-the-counter (OTC). Some are usually combined with deodorant formulations.
They are often used on the underarms, hands, face, and feet of affected persons.
Some doctors recommend using over-the-counter antiperspirants on clean, dry underarms for 3 to 5 nights. Clinical studies show that OTC solid-soft antiperspirants work great as a treatment for heavy sweating.
2. Avoid certain foods
The things you choose to eat and drink can affect the rate at which you sweat. There are some food choices you should avoid if you’re looking to stop your excessive sweating.
Avoid spicy foods like chili or hot peppers.
The heart rate increases as our body process spicy foods, leading to a high internal temperature that could give rise to sweat.
Also, fatty, processed foods like packaged sausages require the body to work hard to process them. These can also raise body temperature.
The body also processes the extra salt in very salty foods by sweating. Caffeine and alcohol are drinks that may cause parts of your body to sweat.
It would be best to change your diet to minimize these foods to have better body temperature regulation and less sweating.
It would also help if you tried to eat more fruits and vegetables that can keep you cool.
3. Choose the right fabrics
Your choice of clothing plays an important role in reducing the sweat rate. You should wear light, breathable clothes that support proper airflow.
These types of clothes include cotton, linen, or moisture-wicking fabric. Avoid tight-fitting clothes made with synthetic fibers like nylon, rayon, or silk.
Also, choosing clothes with light colors will help reflect the sun, keeping you cool, and reducing sweat.
4. Keep cool
Since the body sweats to cool you down, you need to find ways of staying cool most of the time. This way, you reduce the need to sweat.
Having a good air conditioner will come in handy in hot weather.
Alternatively, you can place a bowl of ice in front of a fan to help with cool air circulation. Try to stay under shades if you’re outside on a hot day.
The body also needs to produce metabolic heat to break down the foods you eat. So, you can do well to stick to smaller meals to avoid high internal body heat.
Avoid wearing gloves and socks on hot days. This will help keep your hands and feet cool.
5. Stay hydrated
It is no news that drinking water can help cool the body, reducing sweating.
A study shows that taking enough water daily helps the body cool down and improves general health.
Ensure that you drink enough water every day to achieve expected results. Glasses of water that equals half your weight is enough water for a day.
6. Plan ahead
Several factors trigger sweating. Therefore, it is important to have a plan for times when you’re most likely to sweat.
For instance, a person who deals with sweaty palms should have a nearby handkerchief to clean their palms if they’d need to shake frequently.
Such a person could also hold a moisturizer near to give regular cool sensations.
The ultimate way to stop excessive sweating is by taking medications prescribed by doctors. The range of treatments your doctor would suggest include:
- Prescription antiperspirant. A high-strength prescription antiperspirant that isn’t available over the counter is a good remedy for heavy sweating.
- Oral medications. Some medications block the chemicals, which can help to reduce sweating. Some of these medications may come with side effects, so you need to talk to your doctor about whether or not to use them.
- Antidepressants. Your doctor may also prescribe antidepressants if they feel that your major cause of excessive sweating is anxiety.
- Botox injections. These injections are used to block the sweat nerves temporarily. These injections often last for up to a year.
- Surgery. Surgical options are available in extreme cases. Physicians could use microwave therapy, nerve surgery, or sweat gland removal to treat patients’ excessive sweating.
Sweating is a natural process that helps the body regulate its temperature. If you feel like your sweating is unusual, you can follow the tips given to stop excessive sweating.
If the level gets unusually large, then you should consult your doctor for help.