First, understand that excessive sweating is a serious medical condition that affects your loved one or student every day. Understand that a person with hyperhidrosis often develops numerous compensating or defensive behaviors to hide his or her excessive sweating. These behaviors may include shying away from handshakes, high-fives, hugs, or other physical contact, not raising his or her hand in class, avoiding social situations, placing a towel under his or her hand when writing, and wearing layers of clothes to hide sweat. Understand, also, that excessive sweating can cause deep emotional damage. For instance, in an International Hyperhidrosis Society survey, 90% of hyperhidrosis sufferers said that they had experienced negative and cruel comments from other people because of their sweating. Such comments can be devastating, especially to children. Keep in mind that hyperhidrosis manifests itself as a shame-based condition and sufferers tend to retreat and isolate themselves from peers. Your support can be the key to unlocking the resulting loneliness and despair.
After understanding, the second most important thing you can do to help someone who suffers from excessive sweating is to let him or her know that he or she is not alone--in fact millions of people suffer with excessive sweating everyday. Next, encourage the affected person to learn more about excessive sweating, and if desired, to seek treatment and support.
Learn as much as you can about hyperhidrosis and its effects by reading this site and www.SweatHelp.org - this will enable you to empathize with your loved one or student and to better appreciate why he or she may act in certain ways, avoid some situations, choose particular jobs and clothes, and opt out of activities (despite talent and ability.)
Encourage your loved one or student to talk to a medical professional about excessive sweating and to seek treatment for hyperhidrosis. The International Hyperhidrosis Society has a special program for school nurses to help provide a support system for kids in school.
Help your loved one or student to find a physician using our unique, hyperhidrosis-focused Physician Finder database. Use of the Physician Finder is free and it allows you to search for physicians in your area who are familiar with hyperhidrosis. If you're an employer, make sure the health insurance that you provide to your employees covers hyperhidrosis treatments.
Support a person with hyperhidrosis in his or her quest for relief from excessive sweating. If appropriate, accompany him or her on doctor’s visits to take notes and ask questions. If a particular treatment isn't working, encourage the person you care about to talk to his or her doctor about finding an alternative.The work of the International Hyperhidrosis Society has encouraged many scientists and medical researchers to create new and vastly improved treatment options for hyperhidrosis sufferers. Don't be satisfied if a physician doesn't seem invested.
Help your loved one or student to continue to discover news and advances in hyperhidrosis treatment. To do so, subscribe to our SweatSolutions e-mail newsletter - it’s the source for updates on research, advocacy, and other news in the hyperhidrosis world.
Hyperhidrosis takes a heavy toll and influences life decisions profoundly. Your support can make a world of difference.
If you think you know someone who is battling excessive sweating, we hope you'll reach out to him or her with compassion and motivation to help. In doing so, you could be a catalyst for life-change.