Excessive Sweating Treatments

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Question

Are there any non-prescription therapies for excessive sweating?

Answer

There are several over-the-counter and alternative therapies for excessive sweating (also known as hyperhidrosis). Excessive sweating itself is a fairly common problem. Hyperhidrosis typically affects areas of the body like the feet, palms, groin and armpits. Some people also suffer from excessive sweating on the face. Excessive moisture from sweating can cause bacteria or yeast to grow in these areas, and lead to body odor.

Antiperspirants

The most common over-the-counter treatment for excessive sweating comes in the form of deodorants and antiperspirants. These come in a variety of forms including roll-ons and gels. Aluminum-containing compounds, the active ingredients in antiperspirants, help keep the skin dry, helping remedy excessive sweating. The concentration of aluminum varies in antiperspirants. Those that contain more aluminum, such as Certain Dri«, may be more effective but are more likely to cause skin irritation. While these products can help control heavy underarm perspiration, most do not control excessive sweating on the hands or face. Deodorants help reduce body odor rather than prevent excessive sweating.

Alternative therapies

One common alternative therapy for excessive sweating is sage leaf oil. This oil is believed to contain a variety of natural ingredients that may help to reduce sweating. It isn't known how the sage leaf works and the effectiveness has yet to be proven by medical research. However, some people find the aroma of sage appealing and claim to experience good results.

Another remedy for hyperhidrosis is walnut leaf. In this remedy, walnut leaf is used to dry the affected area, especially hands and feet. You add 2 to 3 grams of the herb to about 3 ounces of water. You then use the solution to make a compress or to soak the area. While this mixture may work for some people it too has not been confirmed by medical research. It is also important to point out that a walnut leaf solution can dry the area, but it will not stop perspiration.

Read about hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating) in our Health Encyclopedia.

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