Hyperhidrosis is a condition characterised by abnormally increased sweating, not necessarily related to heat or exercise. You may sweat so much that it soaks through your clothes or drips off your hands. Besides disrupting normal daily activities, this type of heavy sweating can cause social anxiety and embarrassment. Although primarily a physical condition, hyperhidrosis can affect the quality of life from a psychological, emotional, and social perspective.
In Palmar hyperhidrosis, the palms usually get sweaty even when performing regular tasks. As per the research, it mainly affects 1-2% of the world’s population. Also, the age of patients ranges from 10 years to 66 years old. According to the sources, females are likely to suffer more from palmar hyperhidrosis as compared to males.
Clinical Symptoms and Signs of Palmar Hyperhidrosis
- Sweaty hands can make it difficult for a person to carry out activities of daily living such as gripping objects, using electronic devices, playing musical instruments, and many more.
- The person may also have difficulty in drawing, writing, may even frequently drop glass objects. Some even have to change their clothes frequently while making a public appearance.
- Excessive sweating can lead to anxiety, depression, fear of being in public places, fear of socialising. The person starts fearing hand shakes.
- Work life is affected. The patients might feel difficulty to come in physical contact if they are in positions of sales, education, healthcare, marketing, and more.
- Some patients may even develop skin problems like bacterial or fungal infections.
Genestics plays main role in primary hyperhidrosis. Most of the patients inherit this from their parent.
Some causes of secondary hyperhidrosis are
- Alcohol abuse,
- Spinal cord injury
- Heart disease
- Diabetes, obesity
- Respiratory failure
- Thyroid disorders
- Parkinson’s disease
- Cancers like Hodgkin’s disease
- Substance abuse.
Natural remedies to cure hyperhidrosis
Antiperspirants can control excessive sweating. After consulting your dermatologist, use sprays which contain aluminum chloride which deal with sweat glands and reduce the production of sweat.
- Armpit shields
Wear pads to protect your garments from perspiration.
Avoid wearing certain clothing like nylon or synthetic which may worsen the symptoms of hyperhidrosis.
Medical Management of hyperhidrosis
The person suffering from Palmar hyperhidrosis should consult a dermatologist or a skin specialist.
The patient is instructed to submerge their hands and feet in a bowl of water. Later on, an electric current is passed through water, and the patient has to sit for 2 to 4 hours for the treatment per week as this process has to be repeated at least 3 days a week. The success of this varies from person to person.
- Anticholinergic drugs
Patients may see the improvement with these drugs within two weeks. The medications inhibit the transmission of parasympathetic nerve impulses. Anticholinergics used for hyperhidrosis include propantheline, glycopyrronium bromide or glycopyrrolate, oxybutynin, methantheline, and benzatropine. Use of these drugs can be limited by side-effects such as dry mouth, urinary retention, constipation, and visual disturbances such as mydriasis (dilation of the pupils), etc. For people who find their hyperhidrosis is made worse by anxiety-provoking situations (public speaking, stage performances, special events such as weddings, etc.), taking an anticholinergic medicine before the event may be helpful.
- ETS (Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy)
If all the treatment fails to give results, then the doctor may recommend you this surgical procedure. This method cuts the nerves that carry messages to sweat glands. ETS is the best option for treatment of hyperhidrosis of the hands, armpits, and face.
- Use of Botulinum toxin (Botox injections) in Palmar Hyperhidrosis or sweaty hands
Botox injections may block the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. If a person needs effective results, they may need multiple injections. It is one of the safest and effective ways to treat the condition. Also, patients may witness long-lasting improvements and carry daily activities in their life. As per sources, Botox is 80-90% effective. The important down side to this option is that patients will have to take injections every six months. As any other medicine, botox treatment has minor side effects, which the dermatologist explains before treatment.
Contact your dermatologist for the above. Do not take any self treatment, as that can be harmful.