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Home: Skin Care: Perspiration: Overview

Perspiration: Overview


Sweat is the body's natural defense to maintain body temperature. Sweat normally contains water, and very small amounts of salt, urea, sugar and ammonia. By sweating, the body cools itself of the heat that may get generated because of outside temperature, physical work, and emotional stress. Some diseases can also cause sweating. For that, you should consult your doctor.

Over And Under-Sweating:
Some of us may suffer from over-sweating (hyperhidrosis) or very less or no sweating (anhidrosis). Very low sweating may be life threatening, while over-sweating may sometimes be caused by some severe body problems.

Types Of Sweat:
Our body has two types of sweat glands

  • Eccrine sweat glands
  • Apocrine sweat glands

Eccrine glands are distributed all over the body. Apocrine sweat glands are located on the scalp, armpits and the genital area. These glands don't produce much fluid. Sweat is generally odorless. Most of the times, it is the bacterial disintegration of sweat of both the types, that produces odor.

To avoid odor because of sweat, the best method is to keep skin dry. Good hygiene will not allow bacteria to develop and multiply. Change of clothes after sweating is another method, because clothes carry sweat and can cause odor. If you getexcessive sweat or get troubled by sweat, consult your doctor who may suggest different methods that may include use of anti-perspirants, botox injections, iontophoresis and in rare cases, surgery.

Sweat is not a big problem for most people. It is the odor that is the bigger irritant. Keep your body clean at all the times and take basic care. You will find that most of the problems will disappear. Deodorants do not reduce sweat but only mask the odor with fragrance. The need is not to mask but to stop bacterial disintegration of sweat and if sweat is excessive, consult your doctor and get treated.

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