Hyperhidrosis is a skin disease. It can be generalised or localised to specific parts of the body. Hands, feet, armpits, and the groin area are among the most active regions of perspiration due to the relatively high concentration of sweat glands; however, any part of the body may be affected.
Hyperhidrosis can also be classified depending whether it is a congenital (hereditary) or an acquired trait. Primary hyperhidrosis is found to start during adolescence or even before and seems to be inherited as a genetic trait. Primary hyperhidrosis must be distinguished from secondary hyperhidrosis, which can start at any point in life. The latter form may be due to a disorder of the thyroid or pituitary gland, diabetes mellitus, tumors, gout, menopause, certain drugs or mercury poisoning. It can be a symptom of temporary illnesses like colds and ‘flu or hormonal changes such as periods or menopause. Hyperhidrosis can also be divided into Palmar/Plantar (symptomatic sweating of primarily the hands or feet), Axilliary (armpit sweating), Facial/Cranial (sweating from the face/head region), Gustatory (sweating whilst eating/digesting a meal) or generalised hyperhidrosis which covers sweating from any other area in your body.
Everybody sweats, it’s a normal function which serves to cool us down so we don’t overheat. Hyperhidrosis is caused by an overactive (ie broken) thermal regulator (the bodies thermostat). In the simplest terms, in a Hyperhidrotic’s body, their thermostatic control is stuck on the hottest setting.
A medical diagnosis should always be sought, but if you sweat to an excessive level, there are now many ways of dealing with it.
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