All about sweat
Dry facts and guidance
Antiperspirants vs. deodorants
Unfortunately, many believe that deodorants and antiperspirants are all the same and that they all have the same effect on sweating. That is not true and especially for those suffering from excessive sweating, the difference between the products is of great importance. Antiperspirants contain some kind of aluminum salt, which actively counteracts sweating. Deodorants do not contain aluminum salt and therefore do not prevent sweating. Instead, they usually contain perfume, which helps to mask the smell of perspiration. They can also contain ingredients that reduce the growth of bacteria, which further counteracts bad smell. There are long-lasting antiperspirants, that are particularly suitable for hyperhidrosis, but no product exceeds the 7 days claim of Absolute Dry. Absolute Dry stops sweating for up to 7 days where applied. It can be used against all kinds of sweating, for example underarm, feet, hands and larger areas of skin. Absolute Dry, like all antiperspirants actually, should be applied in the evening before going to bed. The product needs time to achieve its effect, at least 6 hours as a rule of thumb, and during the night sweat glands are less active, providing the best possible conditions even in cases of hyperhidrosis.
An extra effective antiperspirant
Absolute Dry is an extra effective antiperspirant, preventing sweating where applied for up to till 7 days. It can be used against any type of sweat, like underarm, hands and feet. Absolute Dry was developed primarily for people suffering from hyperhidrosis, excessive sweating, but can of course be used by everyone looking for an extra effective antiperspirant with a unique long lasting effect.
Absolute Dry keeping shoes fresh
Many of us wear shoes more or less all day long, at work, in school, while traveling etc. If you want to avoid sweaty feet, worrying about taking the shoes off in front of others, freezing cold damp feet during winter or ruining the new, chic summer shoes, Absolute Dry Wipe is the perfect solution! There are a number of things you can do to keep your feet dry and your shoes fresh and dry, for example using breathable socks and avoiding shoes made of synthetic materials. However, sometimes you simply want to go barefoot in your new ballerina shoes or wear those warm winter boots despite spending part of the day in a bus or train. Or you just want to avoid worrying about sweaty and smelly feet, regardless of your choice of socks and shoes. Absolute Dry Wipe is a wet wipe with exactly the same liquid as the classic dab-on bottle, but in a more convenient format for areas of application. Wash and dry the feet thoroughly, in the evening. Apply Absolute Dry by wiping the skin with a wet wipe - one wipe is normally enough for both feet. Let dry. To avoid getting residue on floors and sheets, you can wear thin, hardy socks. Wash the feet (or shower as usual) in the morning and you are set to go! Bear in mind that the skin on hands and feet is thicker, which may shorten the efficacy of Absolute Dry somewhat compared to use on the rest of the body. Apply Absolute Dry once a week or more often if needed. It can be beneficial to use Absolute Dry more frequently in the beginning and then sparse out the applications. Remember never to flush down Absolute Dry Wipes in the toilet and be careful where you place the wipe, since the liquid can stain, discolor or damage certain surfaces, for instance metal.
Smart tips for fresh and sweat free feet:
- Wash the feet thoroughly every day and do not forget the skin between the toes.
- Use shoes made of leather or canvas. Avoid synthetic materials. Wash the shoes if possible (like sneakers) and use several different pairs of shoes, to ensure the get completely dry before next use.
- If possible, use breathable indoor shoes during workhours.
- Use socks in natural materials like cotton. Synthetic materials retain the dampness, preventing the skin to breath.
- You can also use a thin absorbent terry insole in the shoe, that is easy to replace or wash when needed.
Factors that can increase sweating
Things that increase our puls also increase our sweat production, since the increased puls leads to higher body temperature and increased sweating helps the body regulate its temperature. Naturally, we sweat more when in a warm environment or during physical activity, but there are also other factors that can temporarily cause increased sweat production.
- Most, if not all of us have experienced how an important meeting, a date or a situation where we need to perform our very best under pressure also lead to a significant increase in sweat production.
- Hot spices. Spicy food, for example with chili tabasco or sambal oelek kan trigger sweating.
- Too much alcohol consumption.
- Illness. In addition to common fever, increased sweating is also common among people with cardiovascular disease as well as those with with increased metabolism due to e.g. goitre. Among diabetics, increased sweating can be a sign of low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia).
- Certain pharmaceutical treatments.
Extra fit sweat glands?People that work out a lot, tend to start sweating earlier as well as produce more sweat. The reason is not that the number of sweat glands increase, but that they get extra fit and adapt gradually to be able to better and more effectively contribute to the cooling of the body. This is most obvious on larger areas of the skin, such as legs and arms, where there is high potential for evaporation. The fact that men often have greater muscle mass, which generate heat, contribute to them normally sweating more than women. However, when comparing people with identical exercise levels and muscle masses, gender is irrelevant for the amount of sweat produced.
People with hyperhidrosisFor people suffering from hyperhidrosis, stimuli like warm temperature and physical activity is actually not needed to cause increased sweating, but of course they also sweat more under these circumstances. In the case of hyperhidrosis feeling tend to strongly impact sweating, making it easy to end up in a negative spiral. Knowing that you sweat a lot, you worry more, causing stress which lead to increased sweating. Sensing the sweating causes even more stress, so the key is to focus on staying calm and relaxed. An extra effective antiperspirant like Absolute Dry can really help in these situations. When you trust the antipersirant there is less stress to trigger sweating. Two factors working together against increased sweating. Many people suffering from hyperhidrosis plan their activities carefully and allow more time to each task. For example they avoid being late for a meeting, the bus etc., causing them to rush to make it.
Sweating is natural and necessary
Sweating helps to regulate body temperature. The amount of sweat increases when it is warm outside, you eat really spicy food, you are physically active or stressed out and worried etc. Sweating helps cooling down the body. In addition, sweaty palms and soles contribute to enhanced grip. Sweat is produced in millions of sweat glands across the body. The sweat glands are situated deep in the dermis layer of the skin or in hypodermis and consists of a base rolled into a ball and a duct carrying the sweat to the skin surface. There are different kinds of sweat glands. Sweat from eccrine sweat glands consists almost solely of water, with some salts and minerals. Eccrine sweat glands are spread across the body and are mainly controlled by the internal "thermostat", a small part of the brain called hypothalamus. They are primarily activated by heat and physical activity. The sweat glands in palms and soles on the other hand, are mainly controlled by the so called sympathetic nervous system, also called “fight and flight”. The apocrine sweat glands are mostly located in the armpits and groin region. These glands are also activated by feelings like stress and anxiety. Apocrine sweat is more oily and holds more energy, containing salts as well as fat and protein. An adult usually loses between 1 deciliter and 8 liters of water each day by sweating, so the individual variation is significant. Most common is probably between 2 and 5 deciliters at normal temperature and activity level. Sweat is almost odorless, but when it is consumed by small organisms (microbes) on our skin degradation products are created, causing the undesirable smell of sweat. The apoecrine sweat, with more energy for the microbes, results in more degradation products and more odor.
Excessive sweating and hyperhidrosis
For those not suffering from hyperhidrosis, it can be hard to fully understand what it is like. Most people can probably relate to embarrassing underarm sweat stains, smelly feet when taking the shoes off and wet palms when shaking someone's hand. Hyperhidrosis however, has a much broader impact on the everyday life than that. Time and time again studies have shown that hyperhidrosis is perceived to limit both personal and professional life to such a degree that it also significantly impacts quality of life. A recent study* from the UK for instance showed the following results:
- A majority of the sufferers (61 %) adapt their clothing to the hyperhidrosis, in terms of materials, colors and perhaps even an extra set of clothes to be able to change if needed.
- Hyperhidrosis also affects the choice of hobbies, for about 41 % of the sufferers, for instance by making it hard to read books without soaking the pages and since they often try to avoid physical activities in the company of others.
- For 20 % excessive sweating makes it hard to use technical devices and tools, like touchscreens.
- Almost 7 out of 10 experience emotional effects from the hyperhidrosis, like anxiety and shame relating to other people noticing the sweating etc. or even sorrow, anger and hopelessness linking to them specifically being hit by hyperhidrosis.
- Most suffers state that the sweating negatively impacts their self confidence and self-esteem and many consider themselves less attractive as partners due to the hyperhidrosis.
- To appear in public and be the center of attention is a real challenge for 75 % of the sufferers, leading them to avoid social gatherings, shared office spaces, restaurants etc.
- Most sufferers avoid physical contact, especially with people they do not know. They avoid shaking hands, queuing, dancing etc., but sometimes also to hand over something like small change due to the risk of touching the other person's hand. Unfortunately, hyperhidrosis can also limit the physical and intimate contact in close relationships.
- More than 40 % link the sweating to other forms of physical discomfort, especially linked to walking around in wet clothes and shoes on a daily basis. As a result of this, many also experienced other problems like eczema, or recurrent fungal infections.
- As much as one third stated to have chosen their occupation with hyperhidrosis in mind, since it may limit the ability to handle tools and equipment or cause problems in social situations such as customer meetings or patient consultations etc.
- In addition, 63 % experienced interference in the performance of their tasks, at school or at work, from the hyperhidrosis - something a majority actually considered to be the most important effect of the condition.
Different kinds of sweat glands
Our bodies are equipped with a large number of sweat glands. The glands are situated deep in the dermis layer of the skin or in hypodermis and consists of a base rolled into a ball and a duct carrying the sweat to the skin surface. The eccrine sweat glands are the most important ones for the regulation of body temperature, by efficiently helping to eliminate excess heat. In total there are several million eccrine sweat glands spread out across the body, with the highest density in palms and soles. In those specific places they help to create friction and get a better grip. While the sweat glands across the body are mainly controlled by hypothalamus, a specific almond sized part of the brain, the sweat glands in palms and soles are controlled mainly by the sympathetic nervous system. This system is also called "fight and flight" and it regulates stress. Sweat from eccrine sweat glands consists mostly of water, but also contains traces of salts, ammonia, lactic acid and urea. The apocrine sweat glands are mostly located in the armpits and groin region. Contrary to sweaty palms, the apocrine sweat tend to result in the typical acrid sweat odor. This type of sweat contains i.a. albumin and when it is consumed by bacteria on the skin the degradation products cause the undesirable smell of sweat. There is also a hybrid form of sweat glands, in addition to eccrine and apocrine, called apoecrine glands. Just like the eccrine sweat glands these glands produce ample amounts of sweat, consisting mostly of water and saline. Both the apocrine and the apoecrine sweat glands are triggered by sex hormones, which is why problems with excessive underarm sweat often stars during the teenage years.
Excessive underarm sweating
In the armpit there are eccrine and apocrine sweat glands as well as the hybrid type apoecrine sweat gland. The large amount of different types of sweat glands can result in higher sweat volume as well as more sweat odor. The apocrine sweat glands produce a barely visible and slightly oily sweat, containing lots of energy that is consumed by the bacteria on the skin. It is the degradation products from this process that cause the characteristic, acrid sweat odor. Sweat stains on cloths on the other hand, are primarily caused by the eccrine sweat glands, which produce a larger amount of sweat consisting mostly of water and saline. Since both the apocrine and apoecrine sweat glands are stimulated by sex hormones, problems with excessive underarm sweating often starts during the teenage years. People suffering from excessive underarm sweating, axillary hyperhidrosis, tend to change their clothes often and choose clothes and colors carefully to minimize the visibility of sweat stains. White or black clothes are less revealing, as are big bulky sweaters. Unfortunately onset during the teenage years can also lead to avoidance of raising hand in class, due to fear of revealing sweat stains, impacting school results etc. Dermix Absolute Dry Dab-on is great for treating excessive underarm sweat. The dab-on applicator is dabbed repeatedly against the skin, not drawn back and forth, allowing the proper amount of liquid to be applied. After applying the product on clean and completely dry skin before bed and washing the skin off in the morning, an aluminum free deodorant can be applied to give the preferred scent.
Inguinal hyperhidrosis (groin region)
In the inguinal or groin region there are both eccrine and apocrine sweat glands present. The apocrine sweat glands produce a smaller amount of oily sweat, which is full of energy and consumed by the bacteria on the skin. This process causes the typical acrid smell of sweat. The eccrine sweat on the other hand consists mostly of water and saline, but is produced in larger quantities. For people suffering from inguinal hyperhidrosis the amount of sweat can cause ample stains, which can be quite embarrassing when leaving wet marks on the seat or if there is a risk of someone assuming it is urine rather than sweat. Just like people suffering from excessive underarm sweating, the choice of clothes becomes very important to people suffering from inguinal hyperhidrosis and they often change trousers and underwear several times per day. Thicker fabric, like jeans, is often less revealing. Long sweaters, cardigans and tunics are also used to reduce the visibility of possible wet stains. Suffering from excessive groin sweating can lead to severe discomfort and the constant feeling of being unclean and unhygienic. It can even hamper physical contact and intimate relationships. Dermix Absolute Dry Wipe can be used to treat inguinal hyperhidrosis. The wet wipe itself makes application easier on the larger skin area, than with the dab-on bottle.
Sweating from face and head
The sweat glands are as common and frequent in the face as on hands and feet. In addition to high temperature and stress, these sweat glands can also be triggered by for example spicy food. Since facial sweating is difficult to hide, it is often socially disabling. It can also cause more direct and tangible problems however, like sweat dripping down onto papers and tools or into the eyes. Other people could also interpret facial sweating as a sign of weakness or nervousness, which can be a problem in negotiations or situations when you want to create trust. Dermix Absolute Dry Wipe can be used for treating facial sweating etc. Since the skin on the face and forehead is more sensitive, it is recommended to first try on a small area. The wet wipe itself makes application easier and since the amount of liquid normally is reduced compared to using the dab-on bottle, it can also be perceived as more gentle to the skin.
Excessive generalized sweating
Those who suffer from generalized hyperhidrosis sweat on large areas of the body. It feels like the temperature control center is malfunctioning and the slightest stimuli, like heat or physical activity can trigger heavy sweating. It might feel like you are sweating all across your body, but normally it is more pronounced in specific areas. Excessive sweating from the forehead, larger areas of your chest or back, buttocks and thighs are all common for generalized hyperhidrosis. The condition often impacts how suffers plan and live their lives. It gets more important to set enough time aside to avoid stressful situations, getting worked up or having to run to catch the bus etc. Choosing clothes carefully, for instance dark colors, and bringing extra sets of cloths is routine. As is avoiding "unnecessary" heat, like warm showers leading to additional sweating afterwards. If the generalized hyperhidrosis has a sudden onset, it might be secondary to a for example a medical condition or medication, which needs to be assessed by a knowledgeable physician. The more local problems with excessive sweating can be treated with Dermix Absolute Dry, but in the case of generalized hyperhidrosis other treatments are also available, like botulinum toxin injections and anticholinergic medication.
Excessive sweating of the hands and palms
To a certain degree, sweaty palms is a good thing. It adds friction and gives better grip when we want to hold on to something. To serve that purpose we also have a lot of sweat glands in the skin of our palms and fingers. Just like for people with no sweat, excessive sweating on the other hand can make you loose your grip and drop things. So what is it like, living with palmar hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating of the hands or palms? What most people think about and can relate to, when it comes to sweaty hands, is probably the embarrassment of shaking hands with someone sensing the sweat. However, excessive sweating can also be disabling in many ways. Holding papers, tools and instruments can be difficult, as can using touch screens etc., creating problems both in private and professional settings. Wintertime sweaty hands often means freezing hands. Also children and adolescents can suffer from severe sweating of the hands and in addition to making them feel cold it can also make them socially withdrawn. Class mates might react when holding hands or the palms might leave revealing wet stains on the desk. Dermix Absolute Dry Wipe is very convenient for treating sweaty hands. The wet wipe makes it easier to apply the product across the palm and fingers. Keep in mind that the skin on the palm of your hand is thicker than for example the skin in your armpit, which is extra challenging for an antiperspirant. As a result more frequent applications with Absolute Dry, than the normal once per week interval, might be required.
Living with excessively sweaty feet
Like sweaty palms, sweaty feet serves a purpose of creating friction for gaining better grip. Walking barefoot, a light sweat will provide grip but too much sweat on the other hand will increase the risk of slipping. People with very sweaty feet often avoid taking their shoes off in the company of others and in someone else's home, due to the fear of wet stains on the floor as well as bad smell. Sweat odor can feel especially embarassing, since it is often associated with poor personal hygien. During winter, sweaty feet can create a problem with cold feet, discomfort and even frostbite. When kids suffer from sweaty feet it can be especially tricky, since they can not always convey what is the problem and putting on extra warm socks and shoes will not solve the problem either. Dermix Absolute Dry Wipe is very convenient to use when treating sweaty feet. The wet wipe itself makes application easier. Keep in mind that the skin on the palm of your hand is thicker than for example the skin in your armpit, which is extra challenging for an antiperspirant. As a result more frequent applications with Absolute Dry, than the normal once per week interval, might be required.