Botox for Excessive Sweating
Sweating, or perspiration, is the body’s primary mechanism for keeping cool. But when you have excessive sweating, this is a condition dermatologists refer to as “hyperhidrosis.” There are many causes behind excessive sweating, including stress, menopause, anxiety, and obesity. But there is no real known cause for excessive sweating and any doctors believe it to be hereditary. Excessive sweating is harmless, though it can greatly affect your quality of life.
Do You Have Excessive Sweating?
It might be hard to tell the difference between normal sweating and hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating). All of us sweat sometimes, but there are signs that indicate that you are sweating more than normal. The signs of excessive sweating include:
- You sweat even when the temperature is mild
- You sweat even if you have not had any physical exertion
- Your sweating causes problems in your everyday life
- You get infections on the areas of your body where you sweat
- You notice sweat stains on your clothing
- Your skin remains wet for long periods of time
Treatments for Excessive Sweating
The first line of defense for excessive sweaters is to use an anti-perspirant. When used on the skin, antiperspirants plug the sweat gland and keep it from sweating. There are many ways to effectively treat excessive sweating. For patients with hyperhidrosis, or people not diagnosed with the condition but simply don’t like to sweat, the typical antiperspirant is often not enough. An alternative is to try an over-the-counter “clinical strength” antiperspirant. If that isn’t sufficient, then you can see the dermatologist for a prescription strength antiperspirant.
Though prescription antiperspirants can cause some irritation on sensitive skin types, and they are only for use a few nights per week. But for those who need further relief from their excessive sweating, Botox is a great answer. The popular anti-wrinkle treatment can also successfully treat excessive sweating with studies to back up its efficacy.
Botox for Sweating
Those dissatisfied with the results of the topical treatments may want to seek the help of a dermatologist to discuss Botox injections. Botox injections aren’t just for wrinkles, they are incredibly effective at completely shutting down the sweat production in problem areas for up to a year. It is a relatively easy and quick procedure, and the vast majority of patients report being very satisfied with the results. There are also prescription oral medications that can help with reducing sweating, but those carry more side effects and most patients don’t tolerate them very well.
Botox for Hyperhidrosis
Approximately 3% of the population suffers from some form of clinically diagnosed hyperhidrosis. Those with hyperhidrosis perspire in amounts beyond what is required by the body to keep cool. Affected patients also continue to sweat even when temperatures cool. For some, this can have a large impact on their life. Those with hyperhidrosis can suffer from embarrassment and have to continuously change their clothes throughout the day. Many complain that hyperhidrosis is at its worst during the heat of the summer months. In warmer temperatures, patients can be helped by wearing lightweight and breathable fabrics. If visible sweating is a problem, patients should avoid wearing colors that display the moisture more prominently.
Botox in Armpits
The most commonly affected area of excessive sweating is the underarm, but it is also common on the hands, feet, groin, and scalp and can occur anywhere on the body. There are two major types of sweat glands: apocrine and eccrine glands. The eccrine glands are responsible for the majority of moisture associated with sweating, whereas the apocrine glands can be blamed for the odor produced in some areas, such as the underarms. In addition, excessive sweating in the underarm area can cause some pretty embarrassing sweat stains in your clothing.
Botox is FDA-approved for treating excessive sweating of the underarms, but can also be used in the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. Botox prevents the release of the neurotransmitters that signal the sweat glands to activate. It is injected directly into the skin of the underarms and can take several weeks to take full effect. Botox in the armpits can last for up to 4-6 months.
What Can I Expect After My Botox Treatment?
As with any type of injection, there may be some swelling at the site along with slight bruising. You can however resume all normal activities immediately following the procedure. Using Botox to treat problems of excessive sweating is becoming an increasingly popular and safe method for those who simply don’t want to live with the discomfort any longer.
If you feel that you may suffer from excessive sweating, or are just looking for an alternative that is more effective than your basic antiperspirant, speak to your doctor about your options.