Perspiration is a normal bodily function which helps regulate our body temperature. For some, excessive and often unpredictable sweating occurs, otherwise known as hyperhidrosis.
Hyperhidrosis happens not only during physical exercise or under stress (typically normal sweating circumstances), but also at low body temperatures or even while resting. It's a condition that affects mostly the armpits, the palms and the soles of our feet, and troubles many people worldwide.
The problem is that it's not a temporary phenomenon, it causes patients years of suffering from persistent perspiration and can affect their professional, personal and social lives. For example, people who suffer from hyperhidrosis in the armpits may change several shirts during the day or make a specific color choices so that sweat stains aren't visible.
Hyperhidrosis in the palms may make people not want to shake hands, which inadvertently makes them appear rude when meeting new people.
Without a doubt, hyperhidrosis is a condition that often causes physical discomfort, embarrassment and may reduce self-esteem.
Types of Hyperhidrosis
Depending on the body parts that are affected, hyperhidrosis may be characterized as:
Sweating appears in certain regions (armpits, palms, feet).
Localized hyperhidrosis could be a hereditary predisposition, related to neuropathies, or it may be a consequence of morbidities or injuries that affect the sympathetic nervous system and promote its hyperactivity. It can also occur when living under stressful situations.
Sweating appears in the whole body.
Generalized hyperhidrosis is usually secondary, and may be caused by an underlying systemic disease. For example, excessive sweating may indicate endocrinological and metabolic disorders (thyroid dysfunction, diabetes, menopause etc.) or systemic illnesses (cancer, lymphoma, chronic infections etc.).
That's why, under those circumstances, the physician usually recommends certain tests in order to find out the real cause of the problem. In these cases, the pathological cause must be corrected first and, if the sweating persists, then it will be treated accordingly.
Using Botox to Treat Hyperhidrosis
The treatment of excessive sweating with botulinum toxin type A, otherwise known as Botox, is the most effective method of managing localized hyperhidrosis in the armpits, palms and the soles of our feet. (Learn more about Botox treatments with Browtox: Your Guide to Using Botox For Your Eyebrow-Lift.)
How the Botox Hyperhidrosis treatment works
Hyperhidrosis, in general, is the result of the excessive stimulation of the sweat glands. Botox typically impedes the nervous stimulus reaching its target. In this case, the end point of the nervous stimulus is the sweat glands, which produce excessive sweat. Once the nervous stimulus cannot reach the sweat glands, they automatically stop producing excessive sweat.
It's important to understand that using Botox in such conditions prevents excessive sweating and, under no circumstances, the normal sweat production.
The Botox Hyperhidrosis treatment
It's a very simple and safe procedure. Prior to the treatment, your doctor will map the site of application with the help of the starch-iodine test. With this test, the problematic area is painted black. Then, they will inject the botulinum toxin under the skin at multiple points using a very thin needle, almost without any pain.
The dosage used depends on the extent of the problem and the treated area and is determined by specific protocols. Any botulinum toxin formulation, such as Botox or Dysport, can be used. (Read 7 Key Things to Watch Out for If You Are Considering Botox Injections.)
The treatment lasts only a few minutes (up to 15 minutes) and after the procedure, you can return immediately to your daily activities.
When will I start to see the Botox hyperhidrosis treatment results?
With this therapy, the sweating is significantly reduced, about 70-90 percent. Although you might notice the effect of Botox almost immediately, in approximately three days after treatment. The end results will be visible after a couple of weeks.
How long does Botox hyperhidrosis treatment last?
In general, the results last about six months, although, in some people, they may last longer. In the armpit area the effect is usually more durable, lasting about 7-9 months. In some cases, however, you may have prolonged results, especially after multiple applications. In palms and soles, the duration of the treatment can vary from 6-8 months.
When the action of Botox wears off, you can repeat the process as many times as needed and as often as you wish.
How many Botox hyperhidrosis treatment sessions are necessary?
People who suffer from hyperhidrosis usually need to have the treatment once a year, usually just before the summer months when the symptoms become more intense.
Who can get the Botox Hyperhidrosis treatment?
Treatment is suitable for both women and men who are 18 years or older.
Is Botox safe?
Botox is a drug that is widespread for many years now in the medical world for the treatment of conditions like migraines, muscle spasms, urinary incontinence and eyelid spasms.
In dermatology, and specifically for the management of hyperhidrosis, the amounts of botulinum toxin used is 10 times less than other specialties and its use is completely superficial, as it's administered only into the skin with completely reversible results.
The application of Botox to the armpit area, soles or palms is easy and fast and is completely safe without any side effects when performed by a properly trained physician.
What should I be aware of?
In recent years, using Botox for aesthetic reasons is becoming very popular. (Read Botox at 30? Why Millennials Want Injectables Now.) This has resulted in cases of poor outcomes, either due to trusting inexperienced physicians who lack of proper skills, or due to the use of unauthorized, badly preserved or not properly diluted formulations.
You should always pay attention to the following:
- The Botox that you will use must be of excellent quality and have all the necessary certificates.
- Botox should be properly preserved because it's extremely sensitive to high temperatures.
- The application should be performed by a qualified, board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon.
- The doctor should dilute Botox with 0.9 percent saline NaCl and it should be done in the correct proportions. It's also important the solution to be used immediately because its quality is rapidly degraded, as time passes.
The treatment of hyperhidrosis with Botox in areas such as palms, armpits, forehead, soles, etc. is a process considered safe and with very positive results. In fact, many people, during their first session, don't believe that their longtime suffering can be solved.
But after the first application those people really like treatment's results, especially if they have previously tried numerous failed therapies. They are actually surprised to see that within a few seconds they have managed to solve a lifetime problem.