Millions of Americans suffer from Hyperhidrosis-the medical term for severe sweating where patients may sweat up to 4 to 5 times more than normal, far exceeding what is necessary to regulate body temperature. With temperatures climbing and summer right around the corner, it is a natural assumption to think that the worst season for excessive sweating is on its way. However, Hyperhidrosis is a problem year round and each season brings unique challenges to managing the embarrassment and discomfort of excessive sweating.
Our bodies regulate our temperature through perspiration. Sweating is a normal function of the body and many of us worry about sweat stains at one time or other. Hyperhidrosis is the name given to excessive sweating. Commonly an inherited condition, excessive sweating can be embarrassing and debilitating on a social, functional and emotional level if left untreated. It may affect the entire body, or it may be localized to the armpits, palms or soles. Hyperhidrosis may begin in childhood or start later in life.
The good news is that there are steps you can take to avoid the embarrassment of excessive underarm sweat and how it affects your daily life. Even though hyperhidrosis is a year round problem, in the summer sweating for everyone is just part of the season. It may put your mind at ease to know that your condition may not stand out as much in the summer.
Here are some tips to managing excessive sweating in the summer:
Natural Fibers-Wear natural fabrics that are breathable and allow air to get to your skin like cotton or linen.
Keep Clothing Loose-Tight clothing is restrictive and can worsen perspiration. Loose-fitting clothing allows air to circulate and reach your skin.
Watch What You Eat-Certain foods and beverages, like alcohol, caffeine and spicy foods can worsen sweating. Pay attention to how your body reacts to different foods, avoiding them if they cause increased perspiration.
Try a Prescription Antiperspirant-If over-the-counter antiperspirants aren’t helping you, your doctor can prescribe something stronger. But keep in mind that these prescription products can sometimes cause skin irritation.
Botox Injections-When topical products are not effective, regular injections of botox into the armpit area can effectively reduce sweating for some patients.
Talk to Your Doctor
If prescription antiperspirants are not working for you do not like the idea of or the frequency of Botox injections, then you may be a good candidate for a new treatment using laser ablation of the underlying sweat glands which is now available in our office. Dr. Asarch is the first doctor in Colorado to offer the LAAP (Laser Ablation of Axillary Perspiration) Procedure for treating Severe Primary Axillary Hyperhidrosis. This procedure is a minimally invasive laser ablation of the sweat glands in the axillary (armpit) area. Previously, botox injections, administered every 6 months, have been used when topical medications and solutions did not work. The LAAP procedure will eliminate the need for the bi-yearly botox injections and typically 1 treatment brings a 75% or greater reduction of sweating. A second treatment can be performed if necessary.
The LAAP is an outpatient procedure done in the office with a local anesthetic and minimal downtime. “This is an exciting break-through in the treatment of axillary hyperhidrosis. This condition is not just a mild nuisance, but a debilitating problem for many people. It often causes the patient anxiety and stress which impedes their normal daily activities and can result in occupational, emotional, social and physical impairment. We are pleased to be able to provide our patients with a new, effective choice in treatment” says Dr. Asarch.
To learn more about LAAP or to schedule a consultation, please contact the Asarch Center for Dermatology and Laser at 303-761-7797.