Sweating is very normal, but as those of you who have it will know, palmar hyperhidrosis is a condition that causes excessive sweating of the hands. This type of excessive sweating may be related to heat or stress, but it often occurs for no particular reason. Palmer hyperhydrosis is more of a physiological condition caused by the sympathetic nervous system being overactive. This occurs in about 1% of the population and it may be hereditary, although I’ve never found conclusive proof through my research on the matter.
If you suffer from sweaty hands (Palmer hyperhidrosis) you will already know that it can be very embarrassing and debilitating. Having moist or clammy hands causes the sufferer to avoid social contacts, such as shaking hands or holding hands. Finding a date can be tough especially for teenagers who may be too embarrassed to date or participate in social activities. When using paper sufferers can find that so much sweat pours from their hand onto the paper that the paper begins to curl and ruin. Drivers may struggle with gripping the steering wheel and may use the heater system to blow cold air on their hands permanently during driving, or of course wear driving gloves.
Aluminium based antiperspirants can be applied to the hands in mild cases although this is a temporary resolve, useful for when you want a quick fix. There are a few suitable antiperspirants suitable for, and indeed specifically made for plantar hyperhidrosis. You can check some of them out HERE.
Anticholinergic drugs that block the neurotransmitter acetylcholine in the central and the peripheral nervous system can reduce the sweating. However, people do report very annoying side affects like a permanent dry mouth and even vision trouble, which is just replacing a problem with another.
Several times per week for several weeks, the hands are placed in an electrolyte solution with low level electrical current. You can actually purchase this sort of equipment to do this in the comfort and safety of your own home. This may be effective for many cases and is recommended by many physicians as a safe and high resolution rate. Some say that it’s time-consuming, but let me ask you this – If you’re afflicted by palmer hyperhidrosis and you knew you could reduce or get rid of it through Iontophoresis; would you be happy spending 30 minutes every couple of days for 2 weeks dipping your hands in water on an Iontophoresis machine? I’m hearing a resounding “Yes, Lee” in my head (that could be the normal voices though). You may have to do the odd 30 minute session every couple of weeks after that to maintain it but I’m sure you’d agree that’s hardly life restricting.
Of course this treatment doesn’t work for everyone, and it’s hard to know why really. Presumably some people must have sweat glands so powerful that even this can’t block them.Please see my page on Iontophoresis or my review on one of the top rated Iontophoresis machines
Some people prefer a more permanent solution.
Surgical Treatment -Thoracoscopic sympathectomy
If your life is really affected by sweaty hands then surgery may be a drastic but possibly favourable option. As already mentioned, sweating in the hands is controlled by the sympathetic nervous system. An operation to cut this nerve in the chest pretty much always stops excessive sweating in the hands. The treatment is only useful if the sweating is caused directly by the sympathetic nerve. In other words, if you have excessive sweating caused by obesity, menopause or hyperthyroidism then the procedure would not be suitable for you.
Botox (onabotulinumtoxinA) injections are also used as an effective treatment for Palmer Hyperhidrosis. For this treatment you turn to an experienced medical professional who can inject Botox into your palms. This procedure can dramatically reduce sweating in the hands. The effects of Botox injections are medium term really and will last for around 6 months and then will need to be done again. A real downside to the procedure is that the injections are pretty painful for many people. Some medical professionals have procedures to minimise the pain but it’s definitely something to think about and discuss with your physician before embarking on Botox injections for palmar hyperhidrosis.
With any treatment there are potential side effects and you should always consult your Doctor when thinking about taking any form of medical intervention to your hyperhidrosis problems.