Understanding Your Sweaty Armpits: Are They Normal? - MiraDry Miami
sweaty armpits are they normal

Understanding Your Sweaty Armpits: Are They Normal?

Have you ever worn a bright-colored shirt and immediately regretted it as you watch sweat stains forming in your underarm area?

Well, you’re not alone. Sweaty armpits are a common problem experienced by the vast majority of people. The only difference is the amount of sweat that each person experiences, with some people producing the normal amount of sweat and others being excessively sweaty.

Read the article to learn more about armpit sweat and determine when it’s normal and when it crosses the line.

sweaty armpits are they normal

Why do you sweat?

Perspiration involves the release of salt-based fluids from your sweat glands, which are located all over your body except for your nails, ears, and lips.

First, keep in mind that having sweaty underarms is normal. Sweating is a normal body mechanism that helps regulate your temperature and cool your body. Imagine it as your body’s first line defense against overheating.

It can also be caused by emotions, stress, medications, illnesses, menopause, and even the foods that you eat.

Although sweat is mostly made up of water, salt, and potassium, it also contains some trace amounts of environmental toxins and heavy metals like arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury.

According to a paper published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, around 1.12 milligrams of urea is dissolved in a cubic centimeter of sweat. That means that your sweat is responsible for excreting 7% of your daily elimination of urea.

Thus, sweating can help release toxins from your body, although the amount may not be significant.

Are armpits sweatier than other body parts?

Some areas have more sweat glands than others. Your underarms are one of those areas with a larger concentration of sweat glands, together with your face, palms, and soles.

But what makes your armpits seem sweatier than other body parts is that it is a badly ventilated area. That’s why moisture evaporates more slowly than other body parts, which can eventually lead to unwanted body odor.

sweat glands hyperhidrosis

Is there such a thing as sweating too much?

While it’s true that everyone sweats, some people sweat more than the others. Some even perspire without the usual sweat triggers, like heat or stress.

People who experience too much sweating in their armpits probably have a condition known as axillary hyperhidrosis.

It is not exactly a life-threatening condition, but it is extremely uncomfortable, embarrassing, and anxiety-inducing. Lots of people develop low self-esteem resulting in social withdrawal behaviors because of the shame caused by this condition.

How do you know if you’re sweating more than the usual?
Here are the signs you should watch out for:

Wet and Stained Clothes

Do you often find yourself dreading to wear bright-colored tops because it will make your underarm stains too obvious? Or do you like wearing sweaters and jackets on top of your shirts so that no one will notice your sweaty underarms?

If you have excessive underarm sweating, you’ll find it hard to keep your clothes dry. That leads you to choose dark-colored fabrics over light-colored ones so that the marks won’t be too noticeable.

Deodorants Don’t Work

You’ve tried every commercial deodorant in the market, but none of them has helped you control sweating and armpit odor.

Some antiperspirants may work for you because they block your sweat glands, but they may not be enough if you have axillary hyperhidrosis.

Good Hygiene Doesn’t Work

You usually need to shower at least once a day to get rid of body odor if you’re sweating normally. But if you’re suffering from excessive underarm sweating, showering and changing your clothes several times a day won’t solve your problem.

Washing and drying your armpits will only keep you dry temporarily, but even strong antibacterial soaps won’t solve the cause.

Sweaty Palms and Soles

Aside from sweaty armpits, you may also experience having sweaty palms and soles. These areas of the body are concentrated with sweat glands, making them prone to hyperhidrosis as well.

If you have sweaty palms, it may be difficult for you to hold a pen, drive a car, or even type on a keyboard because your hands are clammy.

Your soles may also be perspiring a lot so that your socks and shoes are often drenched, making you feel like you stepped in a puddle. Wearing sandals might feel too slippery while walking barefoot leaves wet footprints behind.

You Need Medical Intervention

Because all the usual measures didn’t work for you, you need to go to your doctor and get yourself checked up.

Many people who sweat excessively are too embarrassed to even go to the doctor, thinking that it’s just a hygiene problem. But too much sweating can be caused by overactive sweat glands or an underlying medical condition, so it’s best to consult a doctor to find the cause and get treated.

How do you deal with sweaty armpits?

If you’re dealing with axillary hyperhidrosis, common measures like using antiperspirants, showering twice a day, or changing your lifestyle habits may not work for you. You usually need to go to your doctor and discuss your concerns so that they can give you the proper recommendations based on your diagnosis.

Here are some of the commonly prescribed treatments that doctors suggest to extremely sweaty patients:

Clinical-Strength Antiperspirants

Over-the-counter antiperspirants won’t work on your underarms. You need something stronger that contains around 30% to 45% aluminum hydrochloride because this chemical blocks your sweat glands.

You also need to learn how to apply it properly to take advantage of its maximum benefits. Make sure that you apply the antiperspirant at night to give your skin enough time to absorb it.

When applying the antiperspirant, make sure that your pits are dry. If possible, trim or shave your armpit hair so that the chemicals will have maximum contact on your skin.

Oral Medications

Doctors usually prescribe anticholinergic drugs that block chemicals that signal your brain to sweat more, thus decreasing your perspiration. Examples of these anticholinergics include propantheline, oxybutynin, benztropine, and glycopyrrolate.


If you want a non-invasive treatment that produces lasting results, then you should ask your doctor about miraDry treatments.
miraDry is an FDA-approved procedure that destroys sweat glands through microwave energy. Sweat glands don’t grow back, so this will drastically reduce your underarm sweat.

In fact, a study from the Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy showed that two miraDry sessions spaced three months apart can result to as much as 82% sweat reduction.

If you’re interested in getting miraDry treatments for your sweaty armpits, schedule a Free Consultation with our double board-certified plastic surgeon here in Face+Body Cosmetic Surgery.

Dr Nick N Masri MD FACS

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