How To Deal With Excessive Facial Perspiration
If you have excessive facial perspiration, there is a good chance that you have a condition referred to as hyperhidrosis. Believe it or not, this is a relatively common condition and it is suggested to affect about three percent of the population. It can be an acquired trait or congenital but in most cases it seems to surface during adolescence for a large number of reasons.
Many people that have hyperhidrosis disqualify their facial perspiration as just being part of their genetic makeup but this is actually a real condition that requires diagnosis and proper treatment.
Under normal working circumstances, the part in your brain that is responsible for regulating sweat-related functioning, will send a signal to your sweat nerves when needed. These nerves are located in your chest cavity and are a part of your sympathetic nervous system. They will then send specific signals to your sweat glands which makes them start sweating.
Since facial perspiration can be genetic or acquired, there is a long list of causes with the most popular ones being a disorder of the pituitary or thyroid gland, tumors, diabetes, menopause, gout, mercury poisoning or certain drugs. Some surgeons suggest that it is a result of sympathetic over activity and excitement or nervousness can exacerbate the situation. Other triggers include nicotine, alcohol and caffeine.
Other causes and conditions that can result in excessive facial perspiration are past spinal cord injuries, Riley-Day syndrome, exposure to cold, congenital autonomic dysfunction, brain lesions, hypothermia, mellitus, pheochromocytoma, congestive heart failure, anxiety, drugs, poisoning, night sweats, compensatory, toxin exposure, blue rubber bleb nevus, POEMS syndrome, glomus tumor, causalgia, pretibial myxedema, syringomyelia, herpes zoster, parotitis, Frey's syndrome, parotid abscesses, lacrimal sweating, harlequin syndrome and emotional hyperhidrosis.
There are certain medications that some people use for their facial perspiration and have good results, such as:
- Aluminum Chloride – A popular choice is aluminum chloride and while many see results in as little as three to five days, it can cause skin irritation.
- Botox – Injections of Botox are given which literally disable your sweat glands. This medication has been proven to work by the FDA and effects typically lasts between four and nine months.
- Oxybutynin – This anticholinergic drug has been known to reduce facial perspiration but it has side effects such as drowsiness, dry mouth and vision problems.
- Other Drugs – Robinul, cogentin and probanthine have all been tried with some success along with an array of side effects.
Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (ETS)
Sweat gland removal can be performed to treat facial perspiration. In this procedure 30 percent of your sweat glands are removed to offer a significant reduction in sweating. Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy is a popular option that burns, clamps or cuts your thoracic ganglion that is on your main sympathetic chain running alongside your spine. Success rates are around 80 percent and the procedure can also treat excessive blushing. While side effects are mild, compensatory sweating is common which causes your entire body to sweat to “compensate” for not being able to sweat on the face. Most that experience this say that it caused a reduction in their quality of life. Other side effects can include gustatory sweating, Horner's syndrome, lowered heart rate and dry hands.
Other Treatment Options
Some individuals have had success with hypnosis while others who have lost weight or engaged in meditation have seen impressive results.
Excessive facial perspiration can offer physiological consequences such as clammy and cold hands, skin infections and dehydration as well as severe emotional effects. Affected people are always aware of their condition and have to modify their lifestyle, trying to accommodate for their embarrassment. It can be disabling in academic, social and professional life and causes psychological draining.