How to Cure Sweaty Hands

Three Methods:Treating Sweaty Palms at HomeTrying Medical Treatments for Sweaty PalmsCuring Sweaty Palms Permanently

Sweaty palms, or palmar hyperhidrosis, affects 1-3% of people. It can have serious consequences: interfering with daily activities such as driving; leading sufferers to avoid things like dancing, exercise or even shaking hands; and making sufferers socially withdrawn.[1] Fortunately, there are a number of treatments that can control, and even cure sweaty palms.

Method 1
Treating Sweaty Palms at Home

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    Know that different treatments work for different people. While there is no research to prove the effectiveness of most alternative treatments,[2] they may work for you. You might want to try a variety of treatments before, or in addition to consulting your doctor.
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    Avoid sweating triggers. One of the simplest way to stop sweaty palms is to avoid activities that trigger them, such as:
    • Spicy foods, alcohol, caffeine and nicotine.[3]
    • Excessive physical activity or heat.[4]
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    Try counseling, yoga, meditation, or acupuncture for sweating brought on by emotional triggers. For many, sweaty palms are triggered by emotions like fear, anxiety or anger.[5]. Counseling with a psychologist or psychiatrist may help deal with these emotions and reduce sweating. Acupuncture[6], yoga or meditation may also help reduce the stress that leads to sweating.[7]
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    Use herbal remedies. There are a variety of herbal remedies that may reduce sweating. Try soaking your hands in sage or chamomile tea, or taking tablets containing sage, valerian root, or St. John’s Wort.[8] Check with your doctor before taking St. John's Wort, especially if you take other medications.[9]
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    Soak your hands in a baking soda solution. Combine equal parts baking soda and warm water and soak your hands for 25 minutes. The baking soda will help keep your hands dry for several hours.[10]
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    Apply baby powder to your palms. The drying agents in baby powder will help counteract mild sweating.[11]

Method 2
Trying Medical Treatments for Sweaty Palms

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    Use antiperspirants as a first option. Your doctor can prescribe an antiperspirant containing aluminum chloride, which plugs the sweat glands. Prescribed antiperspirants are stronger and much more effective than antiperspirants you can buy over the counter. Apply it at night just before you go to sleep and wash it off in the morning.[12]
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    Take oxybutynin or glycopyrrolate orally. Oxybutynin and glycopyrrolate are anticholinergics: drugs which inhibit the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, thereby inhibiting the nerve impulses that trigger sweating.[13] This can help reduce sweating of the palms and other areas of your body. Studies show improvement in over 80% of patients, with limited side effects.[14][15]
    • Side effects may include blurred vision, dry mouth, and difficulty sleeping.
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    Try iontophoresis. Iontophoresis uses a weak electric current passed through water or a wet pad to temporarily shut down the sweat glands. It is effective at reducing sweating in 50-75% of cases.[16][17]
    • Treatment sessions last 20 to 30 minutes. You will need 2 to 3 a week at first to shut down the sweat glands.[18]
    • Once you see results, you will need to repeat treatment as necessary, typically between once a week and once a month.[19]
    • You can be treated at your dermatologist’s office, or purchase an at home iontophoresis kit for $200-1000. Your insurance company may cover the cost if you don't respond to other treatments.
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    Get a botulinum toxin (Botox) injection. A number of injections are given to the palms. This should only be done by a trained physician. Botox treatment has been shown to be highly effective, significantly reducing sweat production in 84% of individuals after 1 week, 76% after a month, and 50% after 6 months.[20]
    • Botox injections are more effective and last longer than iontophoresis. Although, you will need to receive the injections every 3-6 months.
    • However, the potential side effects, though usually short lived, are more serious, including possible pain at the site of injections, nausea, and compensatory sweating on other areas of the body.[21]

Method 3
Curing Sweaty Palms Permanently

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    Use surgery to permanently cure sweaty palms. An endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy (ETS) is a major surgical procedure in which small incisions are made in the side of the chest, and the nerves that control sweating in the palms are cut or clipped.[22] It has been shown to cure sweaty palms in up to 92% of patients.[23]
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    Know the risks of ETS. While ETS can permanently cure sweaty palms, it has serious associated risks:
    • Sweating returns in approximately 6% of patients who are initially cured.[24]
    • The more effectively ETS reduces sweaty palms, the more likely it is to lead to compensatory sweating elsewhere, particularly the face and neck.[25]
    • It can lead to bleeding into the chest during surgery.
    • Air can become trapped inside the chest, causing pain and difficulty breathing.
    • Damage to the nervous system many cause the upper eyelid on one side of the body to droop permanently.[26]
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    Consult your doctor to see if ETS surgery is right for you. Because of the possible serious side effects, doctors will usually try to control sweaty palms in other ways before resorting to surgery. However, if preventative treatments fail, ETS may be a good options. 92% of patients who receive ETS say they would ask for the operation again if it were to be redone.[27]

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Categories: Sweating and Body Odor Hygiene