Is Botox A Good Treatment Option For Hyperhidrosis?

Botox is well known for its use as a line and wrinkle remover. However, it can also be used to treat a number of medical problems. If you suffer from hyperhidrosis, Botox can help you get your excessive sweating under control. Here's more information about this treatment option.

How Does Botox Work to Treat Hyperhidrosis?

Sweating is a normal fact of life. It is how the body keeps itself cool when it gets too hot such as during exercise of stressful moments. Unfortunately, some people have overactive sweat glands that produce excessive amounts of moisture regardless of whether or not the person is hot, experiencing emotional stress, or other triggers. This can lead to embarrassment, skin disorders, and other social and medical problems.

Botox stops the nerves in the body from sending signals to the brain. This prevents the brain from activating the affected part of the body. For instance, people who have Botox injected into their foreheads typically are not able to move those muscles to make certain facial expression.

In the case of hyperhidrosis, Botox contains a chemical that stops the sweat glands from activating. It is a very effective treatment for this condition because it essentially prevents the body from producing moisture in the areas where the Botox was injected. This treatment can provide long-lasting relief from hyperhidrosis symptoms, mitigating some of the consequences of the disorder.

Additionally, depending on the injection site and medication used, the effect can last up to one year.

Disadvantages of Using Botox

One disadvantage of using Botox to treat excessive sweating is it may have a negative impact on the surrounding muscles. As noted previously, Botox short-circuits the communication between the muscles and the brain. If you inject the drug in places like your hands, feet or genital, some of the Botox may get into the surrounding muscles and cause you to experience reduced feeling and/or function in those areas. Additionally, the injections themselves may be painful and cause (temporary) swelling and redness at the injection site.

Another issue is the cost. Botox can cost anywhere from $9 to $17 per unit depending on where you live and who administers the treatment. Where on your body you have the drug injected will determine how much you'll ultimately have to pay, but this treatment can get pretty pricey pretty quickly. For instance, it can take 50 to 100 units of Botox to treat underarms hyperhidrosis. So you may be looking at $450 to $1,700 per treatment, and you may need multiple treatments during the year to maintain the results. While hyperhidrosis is considered a medical condition, your insurance may not pay for the Botox injections, especially since there are other and cheaper treatment options. This means you may have to pay for the treatment out of your own pocket.

A third, and more serious, problem is you'll have to be careful regarding the activities you participate in. Remember, your body cools itself down by sweating. By using Botox to deactivate your sweat glands, you're reducing your body's ability to regulate its temperature. If you get too worked up, you could get muscle cramps or suffer from heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Therefore, you may need to make some lifestyle changes to prevent this from occurring, including reducing your physical activity levels.

Talk to a Dermatologist

Botox is a very effective treatment for hyperhidrosis, but there are some disadvantages to using this remedy that must be considered. Even if you choose not to go this route, there are other solutions such as Iontophoresis, medication, and surgery that may produce better results with less risk and side effects. It's best to discuss your condition and treatment options with a knowledgeable dermatologist in your area to figure out which one is best for you.

For more information about skin issues, talk to professionals from places like Dermatology Surgery Center.