Excessive sweating, or hyperhidrosis, is a condition in which a person sweats more than physiologically necessary in a given circumstance (e.g. temperature, activity, stress level). Of the three sweat glands found in the body (the eccrine, apocrine, and apoeccrine glands) the eccrine gland is found to be the cause of most hyperhidrosis. This gland is mostly localized in the palms, soles, armpits, and face.
The eccrine glands are supplied with neurons by the sympathetic nervous system, with acetylcholine as the main neuron transmitter. The hypothalamus controls the signalling to glands to produce sweat based on temperature, while the cerebral cortex is responsible for signalling the glands to secrete more sweat due to emotional reasons.
This condition is likely to be passed on as a hereditary trait among families, and can negatively affect a person’s daily life and confidence.
Those experiencing hyperhidrosis are more likely to develop other cutaneous (skin) disorders, than non- excessive sweaters. The main skin disorders that research has discovered excessive sweaters to commonly develop are viral warts, dermatophytosis, and pitted keratolysis in the hyperactive gland areas.
Fortunately, there are treatments for excessive sweating which can, in turn, prevent further skin disorders from occurring in affected areas.
Minor surgery can be preformed to remove a section, or an entire gland depending on the severity and location of the gland.
Botox (botulinum toxin) is also a very effective method of reducing excessive sweating with no discomfort or down-time. Botox injections can penetrate deep into the tissues of the sweat glands and prevent the release of acetylcholine in the presynaptic junction of neuronmuscular neurons. This temporarily stops the production of sweat and the treatment must be repeated every 3-9 months for lasting results.
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