In most cases, sweating is no problem — "no sweat," you might say. The body releases this salty moisture in order to keep cool. However, if a person's sweat glands won't stop discharging perspiration, it does become a problem. It's a medical condition called hyperhidrosis, and it can cause individuals to sweat even when they're cold.
More and more, hyperhidrosis is being recognized as a disability, and profuse sweating is finally being destigmatized. AT&T is among the organizations that are taking a lead in this regard.
AT&T, of course, is the massive telecommunications corporation that's based in Dallas. It employs 260,000 people across the globe.
Two Kinds of Hyperhidrosis & Excessive Sweating
Generally speaking, you can break this disorder into two categories. The first is primary hyperhidrosis, and it's a localized sweating. It may affect the hands, feet, face, or underarm regions. People with this condition usually have an extreme sweating episode at least once a week.
In some cases, those with primary hyperhidrosis have overactive nerves located near sweat glands that induce those glands to work too much. In other cases, it's not clear what causes hyperhidrosis.
Secondary hyperhidrosis afflicts most of the body, but by and large, its sufferers only over-sweat as they sleep. Other disorders and medical conditions can cause this form of hyperhidrosis, including diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and cardiac disease.
Hyperhidrosis treatment comes in different forms. There are special antiperspirants that are only available by prescription. In more severe instances, patients undergo surgery to have sweat glands taken out or separated from the nerves causing the problem.
Sweating on the Job
Excessive sweating is more than just an annoyance. Sections of skin that are damp for extended periods of time often get infected. On top of that, too much sweat can interfere with a person's professional activities. That is, it can make it hard to drive, type, operate machinery, or utilize various office devices.
Hyperhidrosis can also make patients feel ashamed or depressed, and it can wreak havoc on their social lives. They may try to avoid handshakes, sharing meals, and other forms of human contact in an effort to hide their difficulty.
With all of those consequences in mind, AT&T has placed hyperhidrosis on its list of the disabilities it officially recognizes. In addition, hundreds of the company's staff members recently took a webinar that explained this disorder and its effects.
When an organization declares that employees have a certain disability, it's then responsible for providing them with what the law calls "reasonable accommodations." That might mean giving them alternative pieces of equipment, changing their schedules, or reassigning their day-to-day tasks. Basically, it must do whatever is practical to ensure that those people are productive and unhindered at work.
CDCRI Offers Treatment for Those With Hyperhidrosis
Fortunately, as AT&T and other businesses have demonstrated, you don't have to sweat in silence. Relief is always available. The International Hyperhidrosis Society is a great resource for sufferers, and San Diego's California Dermatology and Clinical Research Institute can supply expert care. Its researchers also conduct clinical trials with hyperhidrosis patients. If you're able to take part in one, you'll be remunerated, and you'll have the satisfaction of knowing that you've helped the medical community learn more about this disorder.
For more details, you could get in touch with the California Dermatology and Clinical Research Institute as soon as possible by calling us at (760) 203-3839.