If you’ve ever experienced that rush of embarrassment that comes from realizing you have sweat stains on your favorite top, then you’ve probably wondered if there was a way to prevent this in the future-especially with the summer heat upon us.
But, it’s important to know that with between two and four million sweat glands in our bodies, it is completely normal and healthy to sweat. Of coure, there are ways to stop excessive sweating if it bothers you.
First, you can avoid spicy foods and caffeine. Both can activate neurotransmitters in the brain that affect the glands that cause you to sweat. Another non-invasive option is to use antiperspirant, which temporarily plug sweat ducts with 12 percent of the active ingredient aluminum chloride. If that’s not strong enough, you can use a prescription anti-perspirant that contains a higher dosage of aluminum chloride (20 percent). But be careful, they should only be applied at night because they can damage clothing and cause skin irritation.
Now, if these temporary solutions aren’t enough if you have hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweat, there are a couple of longer lasting treatments for you to consider.
One such treatment is Botox, which we know as the wrinkle reducer, but it looks like it can do more than just fight aging. The FDA has approved Botox to treat severe underarm sweat. In this case, small doses, about fifty units, are injected in roughly 20 spots in each armpit to temporarily block the nerves that stimulate sweat for about six to 10 months. It costs about $1,500 for both armpits and may cause injection-site pain and slight weakness.
A permanent solution to your excessive sweat woes is Miradry-an in-office treatment approved by the FDA in 2011 that gets rid of undesired perspiration by removing the sweat glands from the under arms. Referred to as “microwave technology,” this procedure is performed with a hand piece that looks like an oversized hairdryer with a suction cup and plate, and uses microwave energy to heat up the deep layers of skin where sweat glands are located. It takes about an hour for the treatment and costs between $2,500 and $3,500, and is typically done in two sessions-the initial visit and a follow-up appointment three months later to eradicate any remaining sweat glands. So far, patients have found permanent results with minimal to no downtime.
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