Pete, 26, has a sweating problem. He has tried strong antiperspirants and deodorants, but nothing works. He’s wondering if he should have surgery to correct the problem?
Hyperhidrosis, which is a condition where a person sweats uncontrollably, is suffered by ms illions of people around the world, nearly 3 percent, according the Hyperhidrosis medical website. This condition can take away personal confidence, be very difficult to mask, and causes a perpetual amount of discomfort for all who have it. Pete, who is one of the shows listeners, called into to Dr. Fisch and wanted to know if he should have surgery, or find other methods to get rid of his ailment.
Pete: My question for you is, I have a sweating problem, and I’ve tried strong antiperspirants, deodorants, and they still haven’t been helping me. So I wonder if I go the the extreme of getting surgery done, because I’ve heard they’re coming out with new procedures now a days.
Dr. Fisch: Yeah, the sympathectomy its called. Let me ask you a question, Pete how old are you?
Pete: I’m 26.
Dr. Fisch: When you say you sweat? Where do you sweat?
Pete: The worse is from my arm pits, because its just obvious, all over my clothes, there’s stains and huge sweat stains. Then from my hand is the other part that is most embarrassing to me.
Dr. Fisch: Hyperhidrosis is what you’re talking about. A lot of times there’s not much you can do other than rely on surgery, however, there are some things you can do. First of all there are certain things that can make you sweat more than anything. For example, I tend to sweat a lot if its a humid environment. My wife says to me “I just give off heat”. I am just hot all the time. Are you hot all the time?
Dr. Fisch: When you drink coffee what happens?
Pete: I get all heated up and that’s when it starts, it starts shooting out the pours.
Dr. Fisch: By the way, that happens to me too. I got to be honest with you. I drink coffee I’m starting to sweat. I can only drink ice coffee. Because your body clock is set a certain way, and you just need to sweat as much as possible, and why are you sweating? Your sweating to cool off. So you got to avoid the coffee. Spicy foods are terrible, red sauces are terrible. You like spicy foods?
Pete: I love it but I can’t, my forehead gets beady.
Dr. Fisch: You got to avoid that stuff. Anything that increases your acidity. The other thing is, are you drinking a lot of fluids?
Pete: I do throughout the day
Dr. Fisch: You know what? You may be drinking too much. Are you eating salty foods?
Pete: Sometimes. It’s definitely part of my diet.
Dr. Fisch: My point is, you’ve got to do a little bit before you consider surgery. So you got to eliminate all coffee, spicy foods, and no salt in your diet. Another thing you need to do is maintain your sugar level steady, because what I find is that if I have a chocolate bar I start sweating. Do you find that?
Pete: I find it all the time. I haven’t particularly pinned it with chocolate only. It happens all the time. It’s terrible.
Dr. Fisch: You’re gonna have to change your diet first of all. I want you in the morning to eat a lot more fiber. I want you to have oatmeal in the morning with fruit and almonds. For lunch I want you to have no sugar what so ever. You’ve got to eliminate all sugar from your diet. Your body is telling you, you’re heating it up too much, so you’ve got to have more fiber, less sugar big time. It will big time help it out. And I just want you to drink no more unless your exercising, your basic amount of fluid that you need to drink is two liters a day, that’s it. If you’re exercising you need to drink before as well, but that’s your baseline, maintenance level, if you will. Now lets talk about the surgery for a second.
Pete: Some of the things I was looking into were Botox injection. I read that those were supposed to prevent sweating.
Dr. Fisch: Exactly. Botox injections actually do help quite a bit, so you may want to speak to your doctor about that, because that is something that actually does work. The only problem is you have to have injections, and they’re on a regular basis. And Botox is only for the armpits it doesn’t work on the hands. However, if it helps the armpits you may not know, because what happens when you sweat too much you get to anxious.
Pete: Yeah, and it makes it even worse.
Dr. Fisch: Notice when you’re in a cool room its much better? You are not a hot person, person. Try the diet first, because the surgery is not necessarily the easiest way to go. And then there’s another way to go. Some people do a sympathectomy. That is an actually surgery laparoscopically, where they go in through a tube to get to the sympathetic nerve which sit right where the spinal chord is.
Pete: Does that have any side effects?
Dr. Fisch: Yeah, I wouldn’t do it. Botox in the armpits you can try that, but again lets repeat. No coffee, no spicy foods, no salty foods, no sugar. I’m telling you, you’ll be so relaxed it will be unbelievable. Then it will decrease your anxiety, you’ll be in great shape. As long as your not exercising [drink] two liters of water a day, and if your exercising add a little water.
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