The Drs: Suffering From Excessive Sweating
The Doctors met a woman who claims that excessive sweating took over her life at 11 years of age. Belinda, Shaelyn’s mom, shared that her daughter went from a care-free child to a much darker time. Shaelyn said she feels like she has to plan her day around her sweating, because in the sixth grade, a classmate asked her why she was sweating so bad. Belinda said her daughter’s tank tops would be “ringing wet’ which is obviously not normal.
Shaelyn even found it difficult to write paper because her papers would be wet from sweat. She had to dress differently, always wearing dark colors and layers to hide the sweat. For Shaelyn, jeans are her best friend because they work like a napkin. She even has really bad night sweats that cause her to wake up soaked. Her underarms would sweat so bad that the wet mark would be halfway down her shirt.
Shaelyn saw a family practitioner who didn’t understand what was going on, and actually put her on pills for depression. Because Shaelyn had never seen a specialist for her problem, The Doctors sent her to dermatologist Dr Sandra Lee.
The Drs: Palmar Plantar Hyperhidrosis
Shaelyn told Dr Lee that her hands, armpits, and feet sweat excessively. Dr Lee said that all the layers Shaelyn uses to cover up the sweating can actually make it worse. Dr Lee diagnosed Shaelyn with Palmar Plantar Hyperhidrosis, which they also call Emotional Hyperhidrosis because it’s stimulated by anxiety. She did a starch iodine test on Shaelyn to see which areas produce the most sweat.
The Drs: Treatments For Excessive Sweating
Dr Lee shared that there are a lot of options to improve Shaelyn’s condition, the first of which is a prescription. She said there are prescription-level antiperspirants which are better than the clinical strength that you see over the counter. She gave Shaelyn a prescription for aluminum chloride and suggested that she blow-dry her hands, feet, and armpits before she applies it. She also suggested applying it at night because your sweat glands are less active at night. She also explained that the antiperspirant can be applied to her hands and feet, not just her armpits.
There are also more long-term answers, including a tap water iontophoresis, which is a machine that creates an electric current to help with excessive sweating. You put your hands into the water that is attached to the machine for 30 minutes, and it helps to plug up the sweat glands. After a few weeks, you’ll see a big difference.
Finally, Dr Lee wanted to do a Botox treatment on Shaelyn’s underarms that could take away the excessive sweating for up a year. Shaelyn agreed to the treatment, especially after hearing that the sweating would go away within a week. The Botox blocks the chemical signal to the nerves that cause the sweating. Shaelyn was actually given her own tap water iontophoresis machine.