Time flies and we have headed for spring and summer again. Towards brighter times and although it is a few months away, we begin to yearn. Longing for light, heat, thinner clothes, a cold drink on a terrace. It is as if everyone wakes from some sort of coma when the summer arrives. During the first sunny day, the restaurants and streets that echoed emptily during the dark and cold time of year, are packed Sweden is certainly not famous for its good and stable summer weather, but on the other hand, we Swedes are not so finicky. A clear sky and fifteen degrees aren´t that a good enough start?
But did you know that there is actually a group of individuals in Sweden and around the world who prefer the cooler climate? They wish they could share in the sun, sitting at the outdoor terraces, and the wonderful summer activities but unfortunately, they suffer from a problem that prevents this. 1-3% of the world population suffers from hyperhidrosis, excessive sweating. This means that they sweat large quantities without any specific reason or activity. Sweating is normal and we all sweat. Therefore, it is common for people with hyperhidrosis to be misunderstood: “I also sweat.” “It does not matter.” Are common comments.
Imagine that it is 15 degrees Celsius outside. You wear a pair of jeans and a sweater. You walk slowly to the bus. After about 3-4 minutes drops of sweat start forming on your forehead and then pouring down your face. You are by yourself and not particularly nervous or stressed. Nor is your slow pace walk especially physically challenging. Despite this, the sweat continues running down your face and neck. Or is it perhaps the armpits that produce huge amounts of sweat? Or is it coming from the hands and feet? Perhaps the groin, abdomen, and buttocks so that the pants get all wet? People who have from hyperhidrosis suffer immensely. The shame, feeling disgusting all the time. People, who stare Is he sick? Does she have a social phobia? Has he wet his pants? The heavy sweating is due to an overactive nervous system.
It is genetic and not something one can control. The symptoms often begin during adolescence but can also start much earlier or later in life. There is no direct cure for hyperhidrosis but there are a variety of treatments that tend to reduce symptoms significantly.
Botulinum toxin injections in the skin of the areas with excessive sweating can be used as a treatment for hyperhidrosis anywhere on the body. The effect lasts about 3-12 months with great variation between individuals. Aluminum chloride eg “STOP24” or “Absolute dry”, sold in pharmacies, no prescription needed, can sometimes reduce the sweating but, unfortunately, the effect is often very discreet. There are pills for hyperhidrosis, the most common are called Ditropan or Oxybutynin. Some find that they work well, but many patients feel that they provide too many adverse effects. If you suffer from hyperhidrosis of the hands or feet can be treated with a so-called iontophoresis device.
It is a device that you buy online and use at home, performing treatments about once a week. The results will not be miraculous but often good enough for the individual to feel a big reduction of the sweating. Iontophoresis involves putting the hands/feet in a water bath and then a small electric current is passed through the water. Scientific studies show good results with regular use. Give hyperhidrosis and extra thought this summer. If you look around, you will notice that the disorder is not uncommon. Remember how much these people are suffering. Point out that there is help available. Many people with hyperhidrosis do not know this, despite many years of suffering. Maybe you can help someone with excessive sweating to get a chance at a new life and a chance to enjoy the summer and heat like the rest of us?