Excessive Sweating 

Sweating is a natural process which stabilizes the temperatures of the body, especially when we exercise, work in a hot environment or are having a fever. However, if you start sweating beyond normal, then you might be suffering from a condition called hyperhidrosis-also known as excessive sweating. In this condition, you keep on producing sweat even when your body temperature is normal. People suffering with hyperhidrosis have sweaty soles, palms and armpits. Although it is a treatable condition, excessive sweating can be quite upsetting and might stop the person from socializing because of embarrassment about the problem. 

Normal Sweating or Excessive Sweating

According to dermatology professor Dee Anna Glaser of the St. Louis University, there is no normal range of sweating. It is a natural response of the body to heat and its production is dependent on the body’s requirements. Some people produce less sweat while others sweat profusely depending on their nature of work. Glaser, who is also the president of the International Hyperhidrosis Society, is of the opinion that office workers are going to sweat a lot less than roadside workers. Thus, it is normal for you to sweat excessively if you are working in a hot environment or are exercising.

Hyperhidrosis is a condition in which the cooling mechanism of the body gets into overdrive and starts producing excess amount of sweat which is not needed by the body. Excessive sweating is a problem that affects about 3% of the total population. Since the sweating needs of people are different, it is impossible for doctors to decide what amount of sweat would be considered enough to diagnose a person with excessive sweating. Dee Anna Glaser believes that although it is hard to measure, a person suffering from excessive sweating more often than not knows about his condition. This notion is backed up by Schweiger who says that most of the patients diagnosed with excessive sweating already have an idea about it.

Causes and Symptoms of Excessive Sweating

1. Primary Focal Excessive Sweating

  • Symptoms: Excessive sweating occurs in a symmetrical manner in the primary focal areas including the palms, feet and armpits. The sweat glands of these areas of the body start producing more sweat than usual and become hypersensitive to heat. Sweat produced in the rest of the body is under normal limits. The symptoms of this type of excessive sweating may increase if the patient is anxious, emotional, starts eating spicy foods or works in a hot environment.
  • Causes: The exact cause of primary focal excessive sweating is unknown, which is why it is an idiopathic condition. However, genetics might be a reason for this type of excessive sweating if someone else in the family has the same issue. 25 is the age at which the signs of this problem first begin to appear, but it is not unusual to experience them at an earlier stage in life.

2. Secondary Focal Excessive Sweating

  • Symptoms: Excessive sweating does not occur in a symmetrical manner. A single part of the body like a leg or a hand sweats profusely while sweating in the rest of the body remains normal.
  • Causes: The cause of secondary focal excessive sweating is usually an underlying factor or disease. For instance, it can be an injury to the spine which would result in excessive sweating in a single leg or a spinal disease. 

3. Generalized Excessive Sweating

  • Symptoms: The sweating is generalized which means that the whole body sweats profusely not just a single part of the body. 
  • Causes: Generalized excessive sweating can be caused because of infections, heart problems, anxiety disorders, certain cancers, damage sustained by spinal nerves, a reaction to drug or hormonal problems like a hyperactive thyroid gland.

When to See a Doctor

Contact a doctor immediately if the excessive sweating is accompanied with fever, chest pain, weight loss, irregular heartbeat or shortness of breath. 

Home Remedies for Excessive Sweating

1. Common Remedies for Excessive Sweating



Natural vinegar

Mix two teaspoons of raw apple cider vinegar with usual vinegar and drink it three times a day. Make sure you don’t eat anything at least half an hour before or after taking this mixture. Another way of lessening the foul odor underneath the armpits is to rub them with cotton balls soaked in vinegar.

Tomato juice

Having a tomato juice every day for a whole week is a good home remedy. Excessive sweating might occur when there is a lack of mineral or vitamin, tomato juice is rich in vitamins and minerals such as potassium and magnesium which will keep you fresh and dry.

Herbal tea

Herbal tea made using sage can be an effective treatment for hyperhidrosis. Sage is rich in both magnesium and vitamin B which are known for reducing sweat gland activity. Taking sage herbal tea regularly can help in reducing the excessive sweating.

Wheat-grass juice

Water extracted from wheat-grass is rich in vitamins B-6, B-12 and C, folic acid and protein which can help in balancing the toxins and acids present in blood causing the sweating. Having a glass of wheat-grass juice a day can go a long way in reducing the symptoms of hyperhidrosis.

Anti-sweat diet

An anti-sweat diet rich in silicon and foods containing vitamin B is said to reduce excessive sweating. Both silicon and vitamin B can help in keeping the sweating under control. Thus, including foods having silicon, such as cabbage, lettuce, corn etc. or vitamin B, such as eggs, peas and liver in your diet can reduce the symptoms of hyperhidrosis.

2. Remedies for Foot Sweating

Tea tree oil and apple cider vinegar can be used for patting the feet to take care of foot sweating. However, make sure to dry your feet before applying apple cider vinegar on them. 

3. Remedies for Palm Sweating

Soak about 5 teabags in a quarter bowl of boiled water and hold them in your palms for about half an hour after they cool down. Tea contains tannic acid whose astringent properties can help in reducing sweating in palms. 

4. Remedies for Armpit Sweating

  • Potato. Slicing and rubbing potato on your underarms can help in reducing underarm sweating as well.
  • Cornstarch and baking soda. Shave and clean your underarms and then apply cornstarch and baking soda on them. If you want, you can use essential oils as well. Let it remain there for about thirty minutes and then wash it with water.

Watch a video about how to treat excessive sweating: