by Noel Paul
(Indianapolis, Indiana, USA)
While it is normal to generate some sweat under the armpits, there is about one percent of the total population which experiences what is known as axillary hyperhidrosis or severe armpit sweating.
This form of hyperhidrosis creates such quantities of sweat that the armpit literally drips with moisture and is resistant to almost all types of deodorants and antiperspirants.
Those who experience this excessive sweating usually suffer from hand sweating as well.
Excessive armpit sweating usually begins to occur around puberty when the hormonal imbalances of the body are moving it toward maturity. The usual first line of treatment for axillary sweating is with the use of prescription strength aluminum chloride hexahydrate or the injection of the botulinum toxin, better known by its trademark name of Botox.
The only recommended surgical procedure is currettage, which is the scraping and destroying of sweat gland intensive areas of the skin. This process does however leave scarring and a small decrease in the flexibility of the arms.
A less invasive treatment is ionophoresis which is the use of a specially designed machine to pass a low voltage electrical current through the affected skin areas and shock the nerve endings into a non functioning state. This procedure is not painful but does have to be repeated on a routine basic.
Those who suffer from this extreme sweating can take some steps to minimize the social embarrassment that can be caused by this disorder by wearing clothing that masks the stains left by this excess and keep extra changes of clothes on hand to be able to change several times a day.
Sufferers should avoid spicy foods and over-exertion and should try to minimize the stress levels in their lives as all these things will trigger extra sweat production even in normal people and make their condition even more severe.