The severity and impact of hyperhidrosis symptoms might vary greatly in those affected by the condition. Minor symptoms may come and go.

Sweat may gather beneath your arms or on your back, soak your clothing that you need to change to feel comfortable, bead on your face especially forehear, wet or drip from your hands, or soak your socks.

The profuse sweating might also cause:

  • Itching and inflammation due to irritation
  • Body odour when bacteria on the skin come into contact with sweat particles
  • Stains on clothes due to the reaction produced by combinations of sweat, bacteria, and chemicals in deodorants or antiperspirants
  • Changes in the skin, such as paleness or appearance of cracks or wrinkles
  • Maceration or unusually softening of the skin on the soles of your feet

Diagnosis Of Hyperhidrosis

If you feel that your sweating is embarrassing and makes you uncomfortable, consult your dermatologist. Your dermatologist will interview you regarding your medical history and thoroughly evaluate your symptoms. Be prepared to tell your dermatologist about how often or when you have symptoms.

Testing may be needed to help determine the cause of your excessive sweating and how much sweat your body produces. These tests include:

  • Blood tests, urinalysis, or radiographic imaging
  • Starch-iodine test
  • Paper test

Is Excessive Sweating Affecting Your Quality Of Life?

Consult our MOH-accredited dermatologist for a safe and effective personalised treatment plan.

Lifestyle Changes That Can Help

If you are not ready to visit your dermatologist just yet, you can try the following lifestyle modifications that can help reduce excessive sweating:

  • Avoid wearing garments that are too tight or are made of synthetic materials.
  • Wear light-colored clothing to hide signs of excessive sweating.
  • Use a good over-the-counter antiperspirant.
  • Limit or stop eating hot, spicy food and drinking caffeinated and alcoholic beverages.
  • Use highly absorbent socks that are made of natural fibers and try to change them at least twice a day.
  • Wear properly fitting shoes made of leather or canvas and try to alternate shoes.

Non-Surgical Treatment Options For Hyperhidrosis

Aside from adopting some changes in your lifestyle, your dermatologist can recommend the following treatments:

  • Aluminum-based antiperspirant

    You may be prescribed an antiperspirant containing aluminum chloride. This is applied to dry skin before going to bed and then washed off when you wake up.

  • Prescription creams and wipes

    Prescription creams that contain glycopyrrolate may help with excessive sweating located in the face and head.

  • Nerve-blocking medications

    Some oral medications called anticholinergics can be used. They work by blocking the nerves that trigger sweat glands to produce sweat.

  • Antidepressants

    Some medications used for depression can also be used to decrease sweating and at the same time decrease feelings of anxiety.

  • Botulinum toxin injections

    Injections with botulinum toxin or Botox block the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. It will be injected into each of the areas affected and might require several injections to be effective.

Dr Noor Hanif Said

Medical Director & Consultant Dermatologist

Over 20 years of experience
in medical, Surgical & aesthetic Dermatology

  • Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS, Singapore)
  • Membership of the Royal College of Physicians (MRCP, United Kingdom)
  • Fellow Of The Academy of Medicine, Singapore (FAMS, Dermatology)

Prior to starting his private practice at Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre, Dr Hanif was a dermatologist at the National Skin Centre and a Visiting Consultant with the Khoo Teck Puat Hospital Dermatology Service.

Apart from his expertise in the management of general dermatological problems such as eczema, psoriasis, hair loss and acne, he has special interests in pigmentary disorders and aesthetic dermatology.

Surgery And Other Procedures For Hyperhidrosis

When conservative treatments fail to work and your symptoms persist, your dermatologist may recommend the following interventions:

  • Iontophoresis

    This procedure requires you to soak your hands or feet in a pan of water for 20-40 minutes while a device passes a mild electric current through the water.

  • Microwave therapy

    The therapy destroys sweat glands in the armpits via a handheld device (miraDry) which delivers microwave energy. Sessions last for 20 to 30 minutes, three months apart.

  • Sweat gland removal

    For sweating only in your armpits, removal of sweat glands can be done through scraping (curettage), suctioning them out (liposuction), or using a combination of the two (suction curettage).

  • Nerve surgery (sympathectomy)

    A small section of nerves in control of sweating in your hands is removed. A downside is permanent heavy sweating in other areas (compensatory sweating).

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    Is hyperhidrosis curable?

    Though focal hyperhidrosis has no cure, treatments are available to reduce symptoms and improve your quality of life. For generalized hyperhidrosis on the other hand, if the cause is identified and treated, excessive sweating usually stops.

    Can I prevent hyperhidrosis?

    Since studies suggest that focal hyperhidrosis is caused by a genetic mutation, it cannot be prevented.

    Some cases of generalized hyperhidrosis can be prevented through a healthy diet and lifestyle.