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

 

How Do You Play Flute With HH? An inside look (with video)

Hi all! I hope you’re having a great start to August!

Next month, my quintet, Washington Square Winds, and I will be releasing our very first full length album, THEY’RE ALIVE! The official release date is September 7.

With that in mind, I have decided to share some of my music with you today. Francis gave me the idea for this post as he said he was curious what it’s really like to play a musical instrument with HH. He’s a trombonist, himself! I included a video to show you my thought process when I play and how HH affects me.

This video was taken during my graduate flute recital at NYU in 2011. I’m playing Ian Clarke’s The Great Train Race. It has a lot of cool extended techniques like playing 2 notes at the same time, singing and playing, and explosive air attacks. This was before I started Iontophoresis treatment, so I was definitely sweating a lot at this point.

  • Another thing I worry about is also related to my appearance. HH typically comes with excessive blushing (as if excessive sweating wasn’t enough). Generally when I’m performing and really nervous, my chest and neck blotch up like crazy!! Amazingly, in this video, you can’t really tell! But as I play, I’m constantly thinking about the audience’s perception of me based on what they see, versus what they hear. In the past, I’ve had people ask me if I was okay after a performance because they saw me blotch up. This bothers me a lot because I don’t want the audience to be concerned about me during my performance. I would rather them just listen and enjoy- no matter what I look like.
  • Having sweat on my hands makes it really uncomfortable to play my flute. I’ll be trying to focus on the music while I feel drips of sweat rolling down my arms or starting to feel the pads under the keys get squishy with moisture.
  • HH is also uncomfortable because it makes my fingers swell- A LOT! It can be difficult moving my swollen fingers fast when I need them to. You can tell that right around 45 seconds in this video, there’s a difficult fast passage that could have been a lot cleaner! My fingers weren’t just cooperating!
  • Sometimes the sweat on my fingers will cause me to slip off the keys too- especially if I’m going fast. At 2:17, it’s barely audible, but my finger slipped on a key and I played a wrong note. I recovered really fast though!
  • A clear picture of my mental state is apparent at 2:52. Remember I was playing this without sheet music in front of me. I forgot what came next and paused a little too long!

This was back in 2011, but I still get these same feelings. My philosophy nowadays is: “You love music, so play like you love it. The audience will see this in you and the music will flow more freely”.

I hope you enjoyed listening to some of my music! If you would like to hear more, please ask me about our upcoming CD!

In the meantime, you can check out my flute website: carynfreitag.com
and my quintet’s website: washingtonsquarewinds.org

Thank you for reading,

Caryn

 

Facial and Truncal Hyperhidrosis?

After successfully treating my Axillary (underarm) Hyperhidrosis in middle school, I have only categorized my Hyperhidrosis as palmar (hands) and plantar (feet). On any average day, I don’t have trouble with facial or truncal sweating. However, when I’m exercising, I am a complete, full-body waterworks!

At my Irish step dance classes, I have been noticing that I sweat all over my body- at least 3 times more than the other students! I can only wear sweat wicking workout clothes now and I use my towel almost constantly during the class to “mop” up. My ponytail is soaked so much with sweat that it drips and it feels like there’s a quarter-inch of sweat caked on my legs and arms.

My classmates notice and always suggest I stand closer to the fan or air-conditioning unit. I don’t think they think much of it, but it’s embarrassing sometimes. It’s also uncomfortable!

Although I don’t consider myself having truncal or facial Hyperhidrosis, I think that my palmar and plantar Hyperhidrosis genes definitely play a role in how I sweat more on my body when working out. Has anyone else noticed this happens to them?

I couldn’t think of a lie, so I told the truth

Yesterday I had a late night with my quintet. We were listening to our recording takes and choosing the best ones for our upcoming CD release. I knew that no matter how late we stayed out together, my night was going to be much longer because I had to get home and use my Iontophoresis machine.

While taking the crosstown bus home through Central Park from the East to the West side, I mentioned to my quintet-mates traveling with me that I had stuff to do when I got home and that I was going to be up late. One member asked what I was up to and I immediately regretted saying anything in the first place.

I couldn’t think of a white lie quick enough- It was late, and I was tired! So…I told the truth.

Me: “Well, this is going to sound weird- really weird. But I have a medical condition that needs treatment sometimes and I have this machine that is kinda like a form of electrotherapy.”

Him: “Oh, man. What does that look like?”

So I told him about the set up, etc. I did all of this without going into what condition I actually have that requires this treatment. It was cool that he was interested and didn’t react negatively, but I know that I have to explain HH. I can’t leave that part out!

Prior to October 2013, all of my quintet-mates knew about my HH. It was such a relief to tell them and have their support. I didn’t have to hide using my towel when I played and we were all more sensitive to trying to avoid hot temperatures in our rehearsal and performance spaces. Since October though, my quintet has accepted new members. These members don’t know about my HH. I’ve been meaning to tell them soon though because it was so beneficial for me when everyone knew before. The situation that happened last night seems like a good segue into that.

I kind of regret saying anything at all, but know that this discussion will push me to open up to them. My quintet is like my family and I know they will be supportive and understanding.

I’ll let you know how it goes!

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

My Experience on Dating Someone with Hyperhidrosis

Happy New Year!

My boyfriend had been talking about writing a guest blog post for Just A Little Sweat for a while, and on Christmas day, he surprised me with his beautiful and inspiring take on his experience dating someone with Hyperhidrosis. His words mean a lot to me and show me how supportive he is of me and my blog. He also shows support for you, my readers, and that is just as important to me.

——————

It’s probably not Hyperhidrosis. Caryn says it might be food induced HH but I’m not entirely convinced. Sweat pours down my forehead when I eat spicy food. I don’t eat it very often but when I do, I constantly have to wipe my face from becoming such a mess. It’s not really a hindrance though. I can easily stop eating spicy food (not that easy to give up chicken wings). I could just eat it in the privacy of my own home so people don’t see the sweat on my head. If only it was that easy for Caryn.

I don’t claim to understand Hyperhidrosis. But as silly as it sounds, it’s my small attempt in putting myself inside her shoes. (Which is a lot to ask for since she has a lot of shoes.)

I never heard of Hyperhidrosis until I started dating Caryn. And as hard as it must have been for her to tell me, I feel awful that I don’t remember the first time she told me about her condition. I probably didn’t even ‘get’  how big of a deal it was when she told me. But what know now is how much it affects her in everyday life and how she’s managed to overcome those struggles. Yes, there are some days that are easier than others. Her hands get more wet when she’s anxious and since she’s even more anxious when her hands are wet, the situation practically snowballs from there. But despite all of those things, she reels in those feelings, adapts and keeps moving forward.

It wasn’t always easy for her though. Well, I can’t say it was ever easy for her at all. There were times where I simply didn’t “get it” to completely help her in some situations. But what really helps her is having solace to all those who read this blog. Sharing her experiences with all of you has such a positive impact in her life and outlook on HH. Before this blog, she was afraid of letting anybody know about her condition. But after writing a couple of entries, she became braver and more inspired. While she didn’t tell every stranger out in the street (it doesn’t stop her from talking about it out in the subway though), she managed to muster up the courage to tell her closest friends. They’ve all been supportive and I feel like it gave Caryn the relief she always wanted.

Coming from someone who doesn’t have it, I can’t even begin to imagine how hard it must be to tell someone about HH. Caryn once gave me hand lotion that stayed wet for about 5 minutes. It was definitely uncomfortable and it’s probably the closest experience I could equate it to. But what I can say if you’re someone who hasn’t told your closest friends and family, mustering up the courage to tell them offers more support than what you thought you had. In Caryn’s case, she was so worried telling some of her friends that when she finally told them recently, she forgot that some of them already knew. She didn’t realize she had the support all along and she just needed to open up to people.

My friend once told me one of the best pieces of advice I’ve heard: “People aren’t judging you as much as you think they are.” It’s slightly different than ‘stop worrying about what others think’ because this outlook shows that people aren’t as negative as you think. If shaking someone’s hand makes you embarrassed with what they think, chances are they probably didn’t think much of it. If you think people can tell your hand is getting sweaty, chances are most people aren’t even paying attention to it.

If HH is preventing you from getting close with anyone, remember that HH doesn’t define you. Just like how I said people aren’t judging you as much as you think they are, that special someone will get past it, accept it and love you for who you are.

In the beginning of our relationship, Caryn kept asking me if her hands grossed me out. All I would have to do is hold her hand tighter to show that spending time with her was more important than her hands. Besides, who else could laugh with me when I sweat profusely while eating chicken wings?

It’s hot in here!

Hi All,

My office at work is extremely hot. Something is broken with the heating and cooling system here and so now we have 3 fans on full blast in the middle of winter!!

What I find interesting is that my coworkers and employees are complaining every day about the heat, whereas, I don’t find it that bad. It almost feels normal to me. I think it’s because I’ve learned so many coping mechanisms with the heat from having HH. I breathe through it, drink a little more water, and try not to think about it. Sure, I still sweat, but I’m not letting the heat bother me.

Do you think you cope with extreme heat a little better because of HH?

Best,

Caryn

 

It’s not all blue skies

Hi All,

I sincerely apologize for not posting for over 2 months. Life quickly got very hectic as the semester started- both in work and in my personal life.

If I didn’t have time to post, you can only imagine the trouble I had finding time to keep up with Iontophoresis. I missed way more treatments than I am happy to admit, and so of course, my sweating has returned.

The sweating is not as bad as what it was before Iontophoresis, but it is still present. No matter what, HH is in my genes. It’s in my DNA. Without treatment, I will always sweat.

I feel so angry with myself. I finally found a tool that helps my HH, and I am not taking advantage of it. Yes, I’ve been really busy, but I know I could have found more time than I felt I had.  I’m blaming only myself.

When I think about my situation, my mood starts spiraling downwards. Mostly I am just angry with myself.

Holidays are coming up, and I will be able to take more time off from work. I’m definitely bringing the Iontophoresis device home and will be using it every other day. I’m going to start the initial treatments again.

Hope all is well with you and Happy Holidays!

Caryn

Life with Semi-Dry Hands

Hi All,

So the knitting project went pretty well. I wasn’t able to actually successfully knit, but the string didn’t come apart and get tangled like it normally would have if my hands were sweaty. My mom is visiting me next weekend and will hopefully help with the knitting part, but overall, I have to say that it was a success for me! I am also interested in learning how to crochet. Back in college, my best friend tried to teach me, but it was so difficult for me to hold the string in my hands. I know that my hands today will be much better for these types of hobbies.

The Iontophoresis is still holding up pretty well. Like I’ve said, the tops and sides of my hands and feet still sweat. I was doing yoga and stretching last weekend with my boyfriend in preparation for a Labor Day Half Marathon, and my boyfriend was really surprised to see the top of my feet glistening with sweat. He was concerned the Iontophoresis wasn’t working, but I told him I’ve been noticing sweating in this area. At least, it’s almost completely dry on my soles and palms. I have to say that in extreme cases of heat and stress, my palms and soles will get clammy. I noticed this while running the half marathon. It’s definitely not as bad as it was before, but it’s there.

Other successes this week: writing out a ton of envelopes- BY HAND! When’s the last time I’ve been able to do that without a towel or other piece of paper gliding under my hand as a smear guard? Also, I’ve been shaking a lot more hands lately- and I appreciate every one 🙂

Keep trying the different solutions out there- I hear that Iontophoresis may not have the same results for everyone. Good luck to everyone, and please stay positive.

All best,

Caryn