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How to Deal with Excessive Sweating

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If you are prone to excessive sweating, you probably wonder if it is normal. We must point out that “normal” is a problematic term when it comes to health, since everybody’s bodies and conditions are unique. What is completely fine for one person may be a sign of an imbalance or health issue in someone else. Of course, it is necessary to sweat, but if you find that you definitely sweat more than others, it makes sense to wonder why that is and what you should do. As we go into the warmer months, let’s discuss why our bodies sweat, and what you can be observant of.

The purpose of sweating is to help regulate your body temperature. Your body heat may rise from exercise, illness, or external environment, and sweating helps to cool you down. How much sweat you produce is dependent on how much your sweat glands happen to produce. Even though you may primarily notice sweating from our face, underarms, palms or feet, there are actually about 3 million sweat glands that cover your body.

Sweating Conditions

jul13-2Your excessive sweating is worth talking to your doctor about. Yes, it could just be what is normal for your body, or it could be a reaction to medication or a sign of infection, cancer, synthetic thyroid hormones, or hypoglycemia. Be sure to let your doctor know if you experience symptoms like dizziness, difficulty breathing, chest pain and lengthy continuous sweating. Here are a few common conditions that are characterized by heavy sweating.

Frey’s syndrome is a condition where you sweat on only one side of the face after eating a certain food. This syndrome is usually a result of an injury or surgery near the glands that produce saliva.

Hyperhidrosis is a condition where you may either experience excessive sweating in just one area of your body (your underarms or palms, for example), or all over your body. This condition defines “excessive” as sweating at least 4-5 times more than other people. Hyperhidrosis may be a result of a change in medication or an illness. If you find your sweating continuous, even in the evening, talk to your doctor.

Gustatory Sweating is a reaction to food or drinks. Common dietary causes include spicy food, alcohol, and beverages with caffeine like coffee, tea and soda.

How to Live with Excessive Sweating

Excessive sweating can cause anxiety and discomfort in social and professional situations. Here are some ideas on how you can keep your body temperatures as cool as possible, as well as how to minimize the effects of excessive sweating.

  • aug26-1Remember to keep your body healthy by hydrating with water and drinks like coconut water or sports drinks that are a good source of electrolytes. It is helpful for maintaining your body temperature by replenishing any fluids that are being lost through sweating.
  • Make the appropriate changes in your everyday diet and beverages if you are consuming food and drinks that are contributing to or triggering your sweating. Expand your palette and dietary habits beyond spicy food, caffeine, and alcohol. If these things are causing you to sweat excessively, your body is telling you that it is not handling it well.
  • Keep changes of clothing in your car, at the office, in your gym bag, and in your usual locations. This gives you the option to change into fresh clothing to help cool down. Knowing you have dry clothes prepared can help give you peace of mind if you have more errands, social engagements or work responsibilities in the day that you don’t want to look sweaty for. Additionally, fresh clothing will decrease your likelihood of yeast or bacterial infections.
  • Do your research and talk to your doctor or naturopath about the best deodorant or antiperspirant for you. Some people who experience excessive sweating deal more with the amount of sweat, while some may be more affected by the body odor. If it is the odor that troubles you, be patient and experiment with different brands and products until you find helpful ones. Consider body mists that you can carry around with you for an occasional spritz of a fresh scent.
  • aug24-2Your intuition may be to wear less clothing if higher temperatures cause your sweat glands to react. However, wearing thin light layers may actually keep you cooler. Finding breathable fabric is key, and works to serve as a light barrier between you and the external elements that are causing you to heat up. Practice layering loose clothing: linen pants, a thin cotton tank under a light button up that you can remove. Depending on your lifestyle, Dry-Fit athletic and casual clothing may be a good option. Always leave room for airflow between your skin and the clothing.

Hopefully something in the suggestions above have been a helpful reminder or has given you a new option to try in your daily management of sweating.

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