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You're Not Alone: Coping with Hyperhidrosis
by Storyteller. February 5th 2014, 10:07 PM

You're Not Alone: Coping with Hyperhidrosis
By Katrina (AppleTini)

Going through puberty signifies a multitude of changes in our bodies: some appreciated, some not so much. Whether we're okay with the changes or not though, they're happening, and they're things we should be aware of as we stay in tune with the signs our bodies are showing. Our voice may change, our bodies develop physically, and we may begin to feel different emotions. One such change that many of us are acutely aware of, however, is sweating. During puberty, we have about three million sweat glands that become more active to suit the demands of our growing bodies. Sweating is a normal part of life; it cools down our body temperatures when we began to overheat and can also be a natural reaction to certain emotions, such as nervousness. However, sweating too much can make us feel embarrassed and have other negative social, mental, and physical consequences.

Hyperhidrosis is a medical condition in which our bodies produce more than enough sweat to actually cool the body to the point in which it disrupts daily activities. Most often, this condition presents itself in the form of sweaty palms, sweaty soles of the feet, or sweaty armpits but can affect any area of the body. Hyperhidrosis usually begins in puberty, and those with the condition will usually begin to sweat whether or not their body needs cooling or they're feeling nervous. Common triggers to sweating in those with hyperhidrosis includes drugs and alcohol, stressful situations, certain types of food (especially spicy food), or physical diseases such as diabetes.

So, what's the best way to deal with this? First, relax. One of the most common causes of hyperhidrosis, as mentioned, is stressful situations. Remove yourself from these situations by being prepared for tests at school or assessments in the workplace. Surround yourself with positive people who don't crave drama or constantly seek attention. Keep yourself busy, but don't over commit yourself, and be sure to keep yourself organized so you always know when or where you need to be. Second, make sure you're staying on top of your hygiene. Take a bath or a shower daily to cleanse your skin and get rid of any odors that may be clinging to your body. Third, pick your outfit wisely. Wearing lightweight clothing made of cotton or linen can help. If you're concerned about sweating under your armpits, many stores carry underarm pads that act as a buffer between your skin and your clothing to whisk away the sweat and prevent sweat stains under your arms. If you need to, bring an extra shirt to work or school; you shouldn't have to feel uncomfortable in your own clothing! Finally, if you're concerned about smelling, wear deodorant! Deodorants aren't too expensive, so it shouldn't be too difficult to try out a few until you find one that you think suits your own unique needs. If you try out one brand and it doesn't work, don't fret, there are plenty of brands currently on the market competing to be the best, most effective product for consumers like you!

If you feel as though you may have hyperhidrosis, there are a number of very important things to keep in mind. Firstly, you are not alone. Many people, especially those going through puberty, have dealt with hyperhidrosis and come out kickin'! It's not always fun, but it is manageable. Secondly, there are medical treatments available. Doctors can prescribe stronger deodorant to help prevent odors and medicine to help reduce sweat. There are also injections, electrical therapy, and surgeries available that doctors may recommend, but they may be more costly in both money and time. For more information, consult with your own medical professional to see what's right for you.
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