Botox: The Best Way to Stop Excessive Sweating
Excessive sweating or hyperhidrosis is a common problem for many people, men and women alike. It is not only uncomfortable, it is also quite embarrassing especially for people who are always facing other people. Underarm sweating can be a real problem, since it is not only unsightly, it can also cause body odor that can make one lose self-confidence. A person with sweaty hands is often embarrassed to shake hands with other people or to hold hands with a friend. Excessive sweating of the forehead or brows can make you look nervous or anxious, leading to loss of poise and confidence. If these problems are interfering with your daily activities and are causing worry and anxiety, you may be suffering from hyperhidrosis.
What Causes Excessive Sweating?
People normally perspire to cool down or bring down the temperature of the body. This occurs when specialized cells in the skin called sweat glands secrete a substance commonly known as sweat. The armpits, hands, feet, and groins have the highest number of sweat glands and are the most active areas of perspiration.
In some people, an excessive amount of sweating occurs and it is not usually related to the temperature of the body. Although the exact cause is unknown, experts believe that it may be related to many factors including:
over activity of the sympathetic nervous system
- genetic factors
- psychological factors;
- and certain medical conditions (e.g. menopause, thyroid problems, diabetes, etc.)
Certain substances or conditions can trigger excessive sweating such as strong smells, caffeine, nicotine, nervousness, or excitement. Some people have very low thresholds for sweating and they just break out into a sweat for no apparent reason, causing embarrassment and discomfort.
How to Treat Hyperhidrosis ( Excessive Sweating)
Excessive perspiration usually begins during adolescence and continues through adulthood. Many people seek remedies like strong antiperspirants and deodorants. However, many of these can cause skin irritation, can damage one’s clothing and can even cause darkening of underarms!
Antiperspirants usually are not enough for excessive sweating
Some doctors prescribe medications known as anticholinergics drugs, like glycopyrrolate (Robinul), which help prevent over stimulation of the sweat glands. These may be effective for some, but they have side effects which are uncomfortable like dizziness, palpitations, dry mouth, and difficulty in urination. Other drugs which may be prescribed include beta-blockers and benzodiazepines which help to reduce stress-induced sweating.
Other treatments include a procedure called iontophoresis, which uses electricity and requires many sessions to complete, and a surgical procedure called sympathectomy which is usually done for severe cases.
Botox Treatment for Hyperhidrosis
While the use of Botox treatments is best known for cosmetic reasons, scientists have found that Botulinum toxin type A, the protein used for the injections, can also inhibit the sweat glands from producing sweat. When small doses of the toxin are injected to the skin, the nerves that stimulate the sweat glands are blocked, thereby inhibiting the production of sweat. The effect lasts for 4-6 months until new nerve endings develop, replacing the inactivated nerves.
What happens during treatment? Botox treatment involves the injection of a small amount of a solution into the skin using a very fine needle. This is done in about 10-15 places which are 1.5-2 cm apart, spread evenly in each area. The whole procedure usually takes less than 30 minutes to accomplish.
What parts of the body can be treated with botox? Any area which demonstrates excessive sweating may be treated with Botox. In some centers doctors lack the confidence and expertise to apply the treatment to sweaty hands for fear of weakening the muscles of the hand. However, experts in our hyperhidrosis clinic are trained to treat almost any area from the scalp to the feet to meet realistic expectations. While some areas are more responsive to treatment than others, almost all of our patients are very satisfied with the results of our treatment.
Does it hurt? he needles we use for injection are extremely fine and cause very minimal pain (of course, this also depends on a client’s threshold for pain). Botox injection itself may cause a light sting. The skin of the armpit is relatively thin and injections in this area are barely felt.
How quickly does it work and how long will the effects last? You will experience positive changes (less sweating) within one week of treatment. However, different people may experience different degrees or responses to the Botox treatment. Clinical trials show that most patients experience a 90% reduction in sweat production within two weeks of Botox hyperhidrosis treatment.
Is Botox Safe? Yes, the use of Botox or botulinum toxin is safe. It has been approved for use for various medical conditions including muscle spasms of the eyelids (blepharospasm) and squinting (strabismus), excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis) and for cosmetic purposes (removal of fine lines and wrinkles)
Our clinic only uses botulinum toxins licensed in the UK which has been used for medicinal use for decades. The treatment is also administered by qualified practitioners who are experts in using the technique. Is Botox hyperhidrosis, excessive sweating, treatment not expensive? Certainly not, when you consider the high cost of frequent changes in deodorants and clothes, shifting doctors and medications, etc.
Furthermore, the cost of embarrassment is higher, especially if it leads to social phobia. For example, when you consider that your self-image and confidence are important to your work and social life, just as you value your physical wellbeing and looks, then it is worth investing in Botox treatment for hyperhidrosis.
When to Consider Getting a Botox Treatment? You know you have a severe sweating problem if:
- You need to make frequent changes in clothing within a day
- You need to carry extra supplies of clothes, towels, handkerchiefs, antiperspirants, etc.
- You have tried different brands of antiperspirants and deodorants
- You spend a lot of time thinking about the problem
- You spend a lot of time dealing with sweaty underarms
- You think that the problem is intolerable since it interferes with your daily activities
If you have these symptoms, you may need more than just a new deodorant or antiperspirant. Botox treatment will give you long lasting relief of these symptoms (4-6 months), after which you may choose to have another session.