Topical Treatments for HH

I have had great success with the antiperspirant, CertainDri. It stopped my underarm excessive sweating and I highly recommend this product to anyone.

Although I was always curious if CertainDri would work if I put it on my hands, I never tried it because it said it was only for underarms.

Well, last month when I was struggling with palmar sweating again after my Iontophoresis treatments lost some strength, I was desperate. For two nights in a row, I rolled CertainDri on my palms, put some plastic wrap over my hands, covered my hands with socks, and then slept with them like that all night.

I remember my skin becoming irritated when I used CertainDri on my underarms many years ago, but I was happily surprised to have no discomfort on my hands. However, after just two nights of this treatment, the skin from my hands became extremely dry looking and flaky. I was happy with the results for the most part, but I wouldn’t use CertainDri on my hands continuously because of the flaky look. It took about 2 weeks for my hands to look normal again. Has anyone else tried Certain Dri on their hands/feet or any other part of their body other than underarms?

Here are some other topical treatments I have been suggesting:

Will my kids have HH?

I’m often asked if I’m worried about passing Hyperhidrosis on to my kids. HH runs in my family, so I know that there is a pretty good chance of passing it on.

I’ve given this a lot of thought for many years. In the past, I was concerned about passing it on because I know the difficulties of HH first hand and I don’t want my children to suffer through it. Children especially have trouble with HH in school and social activities. Years ago, a part of me thought my future children would be angry with me for passing it on.

However, after more thought and discussion with family members, I can say that although there is a high chance of passing HH on to my kids, it doesn’t deter me from wanting to have my own children. I have always wanted to be a mom.

In fact, if my children are born with HH, I will be incredibly well-equipped and be their biggest support. I will be able to share coping techniques and be knowledgeable about treatments. I will be a huge resource and am confident I will be able to help them.

 

Dry Grip No Sweat Lotion Interview

A couple of months ago, I suggested some over the counter treatment options for my younger cousin who also has HH. He is in middle school now and has had HH for his whole life. Out of the options I suggested, he chose to start with a lotion called Dry Grip No Sweat.

He is having great success with the product so I thought it would be a fun idea to interview him about it and his experiences with HH. A big thank you goes out to him for helping me with this post!

Here’s what he had to say:

Caryn: What do you think the hardest part of having HH is?
Cousin:
I think the hardest part of HH is having to deal with it all the time. I mean, unless it was the winter, usually my hands were sweaty. I personally had a really tough time getting used to it, and even now. I just want it to be done with.

Caryn: What difficulties do/did you find in school with HH?
Cousin: It is quite hard to cope with it at school, like when you accidentally touch someone, or when you have to pass something around and you get it really sweaty, or trying to hold a pencil but your hand keeps slipping off, it becomes annoying, and sometimes embarrassing.

Caryn: Do/did you have any difficulties with HH outside of school?
Cousin: I absolutely had troubles with it outside of school. Trying to do sporting activities was a bust, I couldn’t really touch anyone, and eventually I started to get stressed. Stressed that it wouldn’t go a way, no matter what I tried to do about it.

Caryn: How often do you apply the lotion and how does it make your hands feel?
Cousin: I apply the lotion every morning on weekdays, and at first it feels like glue because it’s sticky, but that only last for about 5 seconds. Other than that, I don’t feel it whatsoever, and often forget I put it on that morning.

Caryn: How successful do you think it has been?
Cousin: I believe it has worked quite well, but I like to think of it as brushing your teeth. It’ll only work if you consistently do it, as for most things. Now even though I’m not applying it on weekends, I just do that so my hands don’t get used to it, so I can use the same lotion for longer.

Caryn: How has your day to day life changed since using the lotion?
Cousin: My day to day life has changed for the better, no doubt about it. I hardly notice my hands sweating, and usually that’s after gym in school. I no longer have the problems I used to have in school, and I much enjoy it. It really stinks to have HH, but if you don’t do anything about it, it won’t go away.

Thanks for reading,

Caryn

 

 

Winter Sweating Tips

Winter temperatures are usually great for people with HH! The cold and windy air is great for drying out my hands.

However, once winter hits, people start turning the heat on inside. The heat indoors can really make me sweat. It’s hot on the subway, at work, in restaurants and shops. It’s almost worse than summer! It might be hot in the summer but you can always go indoors for the air conditioning.

At my desk at work, I keep my fan on year round. This is extremely helpful and I will continue to use a fan at work no matter where I end up. It’s a great way to cool off.

On the subway, I will use my scarf or gloves to hold on to the rail. I also continue to keep a small towel in my purse for a quick mop up.

Wearing long sleeves helps too! If I’m having trouble writing and want to be discreet, I just pull my sleeves slightly over my hands to about mid-palm. Dress scarves (vs. winter scarves) can also help cover your hand without drawing attention while writing. Always try to use what you have on you to be discreet.

If you have underarm sweating, try wearing a black open sweater over any shirt. This will cover up any sweat stains you might have. You can also try using sweat-wicking products.

Enjoy the colder weather and try to stay cool indoors!

Caryn

Adaptation

When I decided to go back to school for Special Education, I chose a
focus area of visual impairment. I didn’t have much experience with
people with visual impairments prior to choosing this specialization,
but knew they live an adapted way of life. They use Braille instead of
print, canes and guide dogs to get around, and digital audio output to
do work on their computers.

As someone living with HH, I can say that I also live an adapted life.
I wear certain clothes that won’t soak through, I use a towel under my
hand to write with pen and paper, and I keep a fan going wherever
possible to help dry my hands.

Although we share a need for adaptation, we can both live satisfying
and happy lives. This is what inspired me to want to learn more.

I am specifically learning how to be a teacher of students with visual
impairments (TVI). So far, I’ve learned a lot about different
techniques to use.  Since students with visual impairments cannot
observe what people are doing around them, a TVI can model various
actions by using a technique called “hand-over-hand” or
“hand-under-hand”. This involves the teacher to put his or her hand on
top or underneath the student’s hand while demonstrating a movement
like cutting food or spreading peanut butter on bread. This technique
is proven to be very effective.

Again and again, I learned how the TVI interacts with their students
using their hands.

Now, do you see an issue with this? I have palmar HH. What would a
student think if my wet hands?

Although not ideal, this fact does not deter me from this field. I
still want to  continue learning and help people.

Also, my hands have been relatively dry lately. I’ve been having
success with Iontophoresis and hope it continues. I feel like I can
also wear gloves in the classroom if I start having an issue.

From one adaptation to another, we can all help each other. I’m looking
forward to learning even more!

Finger Printing

In addition to going back to school, I am trying to become a certified Teaching Assistant! My goal is to get some experience working with students in the classroom. I am almost finished with all of the components of the NYS Teaching Assistant certification.

The components of the certification included 3 workshops on bullying and violence in the school, passing a 100 multiple choice question test, and finger print clearance.

Workshops are finished, I passed my test. The final step was finger printing!

Last month, I set out to accomplish this task. I received the official finger print cards in the mail and called my uncle who is NYPD.

It was so helpful to have my uncle finger print me because he knows about my HH. My hands were sweating and I can’t imagine how anxious I would have been had a stranger been finger printing me.

Even so, my prints were not coming out clearly. The sweat on my fingers was making the ink very smudgy and too dark. Although I only needed to send in 2 finger print cards, we printed 5! Hopefully the NYS Department of Education will be able to get some good prints from one of the cards!

I wrote a note about my condition, explaining the prints, and sent it with the cards. My prints might still get kicked back, and I’ll have to do something else for clearance. I’ll let you know what happens!

This is not the first time I have had trouble with finger printing. A while back, I wrote a post about finger printing and digital finger scanning at amusement parks. I feel like sweaty hands really work against us when we need our prints taken! There has to be another way.

Waiting at the station to be finger printed- paper towels in hand to dry my sweat!

Waiting at the station to be finger printed- paper towels in hand to dry my sweat!

 

Iontophoresis with Baking Soda

I’ve been using my Iontophoresis machine once a week for many months now with great success! However, in early October, I noticed my hands were starting to sweat a little more than usual. I was really concerned about this and felt like I might have formed an immunity to the machine.

To help, I started doing treatments more than once per week. At one point, I was using it three or four times in one week. Still nothing was working.

I remembered one of my readers from NYC had said that the water here is pretty soft and sometimes doesn’t work well with Iontophoresis. Until October, I hadn’t had an issue with the water or effectiveness of the machine. I was told that adding baking soda to the water can help by adding minerals and electrolytes.

After adding baking soda to my treatments, I noticed a significant difference. My palm sweating is now more under control. Adding baking soda does make the treatments a little more uncomfortable. It irritates my skin a little more, but it’s worth it!

Sweathelp.org has an article dedicated to Iontophoresis. In addition to baking soda, it says you can even try crushing Robinol tablets in the water.

I’ll let you know if the baking soda continues to work!

 

 

 

 

Entire Medical Journal dedicated to HH

Last week, I received an email from the International Hyperhidrosis Society stating that an entire issue of the Dermatologic Clinics medical journal was dedicated completely to Hyperhidrosis! This is ground-breaking news and I wanted to learn more. The issue is found in October 2014, Volume 32, Number 4. It covers topics such as:

  • Prevalence of HH
  • Impact of HH on Quality of Life
  • Special Considerations for Children with HH
  • Topical Therapies
  • Iontophoresis
  • Botox treatments
  • Oral medications
  • ETS surgery
  • Emerging therapies
  • Resources for patients and sufferers
  • Incorporating diagnosis and treatment into Clinical Practice

You can purchase the entire issue or individual articles. This is a really exciting breakthrough for people with HH. The issue will be available to medical specialists and provide education on our condition and the latest treatments available! Just another big step in the right direction for universal awareness and understanding.

Share your HH stories on a brand new site!

Hi all,

I’m excited to promote this amazing new website project from one of my readers, Matthew Roundell. His website is a story telling platform for the Hyperhidrosis community. The site is still in the works as Matthew is trying to compile more stories from people like you!

I submitted my story and I can’t wait to read yours!

Check it out and submit your story today at www.hyperhidrosee.com

A big thank you goes to Matthew for continuing to connect the HH community!

All the best,

Caryn

Screen Shot 2014-09-09 at 8.46.47 PM

 

A Safe, New Treatment for Excessive Sweating

Hyperhidrosis isn’t easy, but let’s face it, neither are the common treatments. If you decide to use a heavy duty antiperspirant you have to apply it often. If you choose Botox®, you need to pay for a new treatment every 3 to 6 months. Then, if you decide to go a more permanent route like thermal liposuction, you run the risk of burning and damaging your skin, glands, or deeper tissues. There has to be another way doesn’t there? There is.

A pioneering new liposuction technique has been growing in popularity, and one of its uses is not for liposuction, but rather for hyperhidrosis. The procedure known as SAFELipo® has been recognized for exactly what its name implies: a safer alternative. When it comes to treating excessive sweating, it is also a safer method than some of the alternative permanent treatments, like thermal liposuction. This is because it doesn’t run the risk of burning your body.

So, how exactly does SAFELipo work? Basically, it treats hyperhidrosis by disrupting the apocrine glands in the armpits. The apocrine glands are the sweat and odor producing glands in the body.

Who is a candidate for SAFELipo? The procedure focuses on the patient’s armpit and breast areas, making it ideal for people with underarm (axillary) hyperhidrosis.

What sets SAFELipo apart from other treatments? The SAFELipo website explains that, “Thermal liposuction and Botox injections, two of the most commonly employed hyperhidrosis treatments, both have their drawbacks. Lipo can be effective, but thermal methods such as laser and smart liposuction can destroy vital tissues. Botox, while safer, only deactivates the sweat glands temporarily. SAFELipo offers the best of both worlds: permanent disruption and deactivation of the sweat glands without the risk of thermal injury.”

If you suffer from hyperhidrosis and want to learn more about whether SAFELipo can work for you, you’ll need to find a doctor that is qualified to perform the procedure. The easiest way is to utilize the “Find a Doctor” feature on the SAFELipo website. From here, you can easily select your location and browse providers in your state.

Hyperhidrosis is tough to live with, but luckily there are treatments such as SAFELipo that offer permanent solutions so we can live without it.

–guest post written by Mike Davis