Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The sweat guide for dating

Sweating, when you’re nervous or hot, is natural. Excessive sweating, called hyperhidrosis, can be problematic. It happens when your sympathetic nervous system is out of whack — working harder than it needs to in regulating your body temperature. Sweat appears on the palms of your hands, your face, feet, and torso, as well as your pits. Remember the Albert Brooks flop sweat scene in the movie Broadcast News? No one wants that to happen on a date. If you sweat profusely (or even just a little), here are things that can help:
  • Antiperspirants: The active ingredient in most antiperspirants is aluminum zirconium trichlorohydrex (or tetra-chlorohydrex) GLY. Some people do apply antiperspirant to the soles of their feet or the palms of their hands, but most use them on their armpits. The purpose of an antiperspirant is to stop sweat from reaching the skin. A deodorant, on the other hand, is used to mask perspiration odors.
  • Powders: Brushed on the hands and feet, talc, cornstarch, and baking soda-based powders absorb perspiration as it reaches the surface of your skin.
  • Relaxation: Particularly before a big date, sweat may be more of an emotional response to stress than a physical problem with your armpits or hands or forehead. Take several deep breaths and try to chill out.
  • Surgery: In severe cases of sweating, surgery is possible to remove axillary sweat glands, or the sweat glands under the arms — but don’t try this at home.

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