Axillary Hyperhidrosis

Axillary hyperhidrosis, or excessive underarm sweating, is a medical condition that causes people to sweat up to five times more than necessary to regulate body temperature.

Let's learn more about axillary hyperhidrosis and how to manage severe armpit sweat.

*PLEASE NOTE: As with all medical-related issues, it's best to seek advice from a qualified medical practitioner. The information provided is not to be used or relied upon for diagnostic purposes, nor should it be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.

What Is Axillary Hyperhidrosis?

People with axillary hyperhidrosis have overactive nerves that trigger glands in the underarms, producing excessive and unnecessary armpit sweat. While sweating can be a side effect of medications or medical conditions, primary axillary hyperhidrosis is a medical condition itself.

Approximately 2-3% of the U.S. population has axillary hyperhidrosis, with men and women affected equally. According to the International Hyperhidrosis Society, studies show that it's the most common sweat disorder – affecting 68% of study participants. In addition, research shows that the condition can be genetic, so if a family member has hyperhidrosis, you're more likely to inherit it.

This type of excessive underarm sweating tends to begin during puberty, but symptoms can appear up to age 25. Strangely, those with primary axillary hyperhidrosis don't experience symptoms while sleeping.

Symptoms of Axillary Hyperhidrosis

Axillary hyperhidrosis symptoms can include:

  • Bathing or changing shirts multiple times a day due to sweat marks or stains
  • Sweating suddenly and excessively under your arms regardless of temperature or physical activity
  • Avoiding social situations or feeling anxiety due to your underarm sweating

Talk to your doctor if you think you have axillary hyperhidrosis. Your primary physician can refer you to a specialist or help you determine the best treatments or course of action.

Read more: Do You Need to See a Hyperhidrosis Doctor? »

Side Effects of Axillary Hyperhidrosis

People who have axillary hyperhidrosis can experience a range of physical and psychological side effects beyond severe sweat, including:

  • Reduced confidence or self-esteem
  • Loss of concentration at work
  • Fear of social situations
  • Anxiety about sweating

To outsiders, heavy armpit sweating might seem like a cosmetic condition that doesn't pose any serious side effects. But constantly worrying over the appearance of underarm sweat marks can make you vulnerable to anxiety and depression and affect your overall quality of life. Shying away from the spotlight can also have repercussions on your career, preventing you from seeking out promotions or advancing in your career.

The good news is, the condition is 100% manageable..

Living With Anxiety & Hiperhidrosis »

Treatments for Axillary Hyperhidrosis

While there is currently no cure for axillary hyperhidrosis, many products, medications and home remedies exist to help minimize underarm sweat. However, some hyperhidrosis treatment options are costly, more invasive and riskier than other methods.

Non-Invasive Treatments

  • Sweat proof shirts: This is the safest, chemical-free option. Thompson Tee's patented undershirts contain a sweat proof underarm barrier that absorbs moisture, preventing armpit sweat from seeping through fabric and ruining clothing with yellow stains.
  • Antiperspirants: Clinical or prescription-strength antiperspirants are recommended for those with axillary hyperhidrosis.
  • Anti-sweat wipes: Over-the-counter antiperspirant wipes can also help prevent excessive armpit sweat.
  • Iontophoresis: A mild electric current can relieve underarm sweating by blocking sweat glands.
  • Oral medications: These most commonly include anticholinergics, beta-blockers and benzodiazepines.
  • miraDry: A non-invasive device that delivers electromagnetic energy that breaks down sweat glands.

Invasive Treatments

  • Botox injections: Botulinum toxin injections block the secretion of the chemical that activates sweat glands, interrupting underarm sweating.
  • Laser therapy: Lasers can target and destroy sweat glands with precision. However, research conducted on laser surgery for axillary hyperhidrosis has been minimal.
  • Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy (ETS) surgery: Surgical removal of underarm sweat glands is highly invasive. The procedure should be considered a last resort option. ETS can cause severe, long-lasting side effects.

Read more: A Complete List of Treatments for Axillary Hyperhidrosis

When Excessive Sweating Is Serious

For the most part, axillary hyperhidrosis isn't a harmful or life-threatening condition. However, there are instances where it can indicate a more significant health problem.

See your doctor if:

  • You experience new or unusual sweating, especially after age 25
  • No one else in your family sweats heavily
  • Sweating occurs all over your body or in large areas
  • You get night sweats
  • You're taking new medications

The Most Effective Way to Manage Axillary Hyperhidrosis

Many people with axillary hyperhidrosis find that using a reliable antiperspirant and wearing a sweat proof undershirt like Thompson Tee are effective against heavy sweating.

Thompson Tee's co-founders spent over ten years developing the shirt's patented sweat proof technology, Hydro-Shield. Hydro-Shield technology traps heat and moisture, allowing it to evaporate rather than seep through your outer layers of clothing. The result? Ultimate relief from sweat marks and yellow stains.

Don't let sweaty armpits stop you from living your best life. Instead, protect your clothing and confidence with a sweat proof Thompson Tee.