- Paris Flash
- Real Estate
Q: My underarms sweat a lot, even when it is cold. I am a young and otherwise healthy guy. This is causing a lot of social anxiety. What is causing it, and what can I do about it?
A: You are not alone. Excess sweating (hyperhydrosis) is a common disorder, and affects almost 3% of the population. The excessive sweating cannot only be localized (involving the underarms, or palms and soles), but it can be generalized (all over the body) as well. It is often a severe and emotionally distressing problem for people with the condition.
What causes it?
The most common type of excessive sweating is called primary focal hyperhidrosis. This is localized, such as to underarms, hands, feet, face or groin. Symptoms also tend to be symmetrical, occurring on both sides equally. This usually starts in childhood or adolescence. Although it is a problem, it’s not a sign of disease. People who have it are otherwise healthy. The cause of this is believed to be a minor malfunction in the nervous system. There’s some evidence that it could run in families.
The other less common form is called generalized secondary hyperhidrosis, and causes sweating all over the body – not just on the hands or feet. It’s called secondary because it’s being caused by an underlying health condition. There are a number of different medical conditions and diseases which may cause it, such as: menopause, thyroid problems, diabetes, tuberculosis, rheumatoid arthritis, or some types of cancers. Medications can also cause general excessive sweating (Some psychiatric drugs and blood pressure medications).
When should you see the doctor?
How do we treat it?
While there is no cure for focal excess sweating, the following treatment options may be tried:
This information is strictly an opinion of Dr Prakash, and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Dr Chris Prakash is a contributing columnist, and author of eParisExtra’s “The Doctor is In” column. He is a medical oncologist at Texas Oncology Paris. He is board certified in Internal Medicine, Oncology and Hematology. He lives in Paris, TX with his wife and two children, and can be reached at 9037850031, or Sucharu.email@example.com.