Hyperhidrosis (hi-pur-hi-DROE-sis) is excessive sweating that occurs even when the temperature isn't hot and you're not exercising. In some people who have hyperhidrosis, the sweat literally drips off their hands.

Hyperhidrosis usually affects the palms of the hands, soles of the feet and underarms. Besides disrupting normal daily activities, hyperhidrosis can cause social anxiety or embarrassment.

One of the first options for treatment involves using prescription-strength antiperspirants on the affected areas. In severe cases, your doctor may suggest surgery either to remove the sweat glands or to disconnect the nerves responsible for the overproduction of sweat.

Symptoms Causes Complications

Most people sweat when they exercise or exert themselves, are in a hot environment, or are nervous, anxious or under stress. The excessive sweating experienced with hyperhidrosis far exceeds such normal sweating.

Hyperhidrosis usually affects the hands, feet, underarms and sometimes the face. Rarely, the entire body is affected. The excessive sweat may soak through clothes or drip off your hands. Episodes usually occur at least once a week without an obvious reason.

When to see a doctor

See your doctor if:

  • Sweating disrupts your daily routine
  • You suddenly begin to sweat more than usual
  • You experience night sweats for no apparent reason

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