Hyperhidrosis or excessive sweating is a very frequent and uncomfortable condition both for the person who has it and for those around them. Here you will find our complete file on the subject.


Hyperhidrosis (in English Hyperhidrosis ) is caused by excessive perspiration or sweating, which is manifested in an excessive and abnormal way by the sweat glands. In other words, a person suffering from excessive sweating sweats more than would be expected given the climate or level of physical activity. We sweat to cool the body and not to eliminate toxins, which are eliminated in the liver or kidneys.

Excessive sweating is not a disease but it can hide some serious and not so serious ones, so it is important to consult a doctor in case of frequent excessive sweating. It can also cause personal and social problems (psychological, affective, etc.).

Perspiration content:
Perspiration is composed of 99% water, mixed with a little salt, carbohydrates, proteins and a little urea (a non-toxic molecule).

Generalized or localized excessive sweating

There is generalized excessive sweating (generalized hyperhidrosis) that affects the whole body, and localized sweating (localized hyperhidrosis) that affects only one part of the body, such as the armpits, hands, feet, genital area, etc. The causes and treatments of these two types of sweating are different.


According to the American journal Prevention , in 2019 4.8% of Americans suffered from hyperhidrosis. The same magazine estimated that in 2020 about 15 million North Americans suffered from hyperhidrosis.


Hyperhidrosis usually begins in adolescence or menopause, most often in women, but everyone can develop this disease. Genetics could explain why some people develop the disease and others don’t. Therefore, it is not perspiration that directly causes a possible bad smell, but the bacteria that interact on the skin with dry perspiration (after evaporation of water). That’s why it’s beneficial to dry or rinse with a shower (then dry thoroughly) the area that perspires to decrease bacterial growth.

A. In case of generalized hyperhidrosis, the causes can be:

– diabetes
– heart failure (related, for example, to high blood pressure)
– overactivity of the thyroid gland ( hyperthyroid )
– a tumor (cancer)
– various infectious diseases (tuberculosis,…)
– mild psychological problems ( mild anxiety , low self-esteem) or more serious (recurrent anxieties)
– stress and nervousness
– fatigue
– menopause (we are still talking about hot flashes)
– fever
– overweight or obesity
– use of certain medications (e.g. beta-blockers, neuroleptics, antidepressants, etc.)

B. In case of localized hyperhidrosis (on the hands, under the arms, etc.):

– the stress

– excessive heat

– sometimes for no reason


Excessive sweating can leave wet spots and a bad odor on clothes (due to bacterial decomposition).

Hyperhidrosis can sometimes cause mycoses, as these develop more easily in humid environments.


The first treatment consists of identifying the cause and eventually remedying it. If this is not the case or if the cause is not identified, the doctor may prescribe the following medications to treat hyperhidrosis:

– In case of generalized hyperhidrosis:
It is possible to use anticholinergics, which are medicines to be taken in pill form and under medical prescription, but unfortunately they have several side effects such as dry mouth, visual problems, etc. It is also possible to use iontophoresis (which consists of passing a galvanic current around the skin) as well as surgical techniques (action on the sweat glands). Talk to your doctor, as sometimes cases of generalized hyperhidrosis can occur due to a more serious illness. Only a doctor will be able to correctly analyze your case.

We also emphasize the possibility of adopting the same treatments used for localized hyperhidrosis, such as * aluminum salts, antiperspirants, deodorants, as well as natural sage -based medicines .

– In case of localized hyperhidrosis:
There are several drugs against localized hyperhidrosis that can be found without a medical prescription, in pharmacies. These medicines are generally based on * aluminum salts, in particular on * aluminum chloride,  and must be applied to the skin in the form of strips or solutions.

You can also use deodorants to mask any bad odor.

In some situations, the doctor may give Botox injections in places with excessive sweating.

In the United States, there is Qbrexza. A medication used topically under the arm ( underarm ) cleared by the FDA in 2018 that blocks nerve signals that activate sweat glands.

Herbal medicine

Sage is a plant known for its use against excessive sweating. Sage is mostly consumed in the form of drops, teas, powder to leave in shoes or capsules (totaling 1000mg per day of dried sage).

Tips & Prevention

– Avoid the consumption of coffee, alcohol, cigarettes or very strong foods such as peppers, as these substances can favor hyperhidrosis.

– Avoid stress and nervousness, as these states of hyperactivity favor perspiration.

– Wear light, loose and airy clothing, if possible, weather permitting (check with specialist stores).

– Opt for a balanced diet (rich in fruit, for example) and practice sports regularly, as this also has a positive effect on hyperhidrosis, especially at the time of menopause.

– Even if in most cases hyperhidrosis is not the cause of a serious health problem, in some cases it can be the expression of a more serious illness such as diabetes, cancer, etc. It is therefore strongly recommended to consult a doctor in case of excessive sweating, especially if it is widespread.

– In case of excessive perspiration in the foot area, take showers varying between hot and cold temperatures. You can also make foot baths with the witch hazel plant (astringent effect).

– Try to quickly dry the area of ​​skin that has perspired, to eliminate the bacteria that may be responsible for the bad smell (see also under Symptoms above). You can also shower or rinse the area of ​​your body that you sweat and then dry it thoroughly to limit bacterial growth.

Jeanne Kenney
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I’m a stylist trainer, a content creator, and an entrepreneur passion. Virgo sign and Pisces ascendant, I move easily between my dreams, the crazy world I want, and my feet on the ground to carry out my projects.

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