Q. I get overly sweaty. It can be uncomfortable and it can be embarrassing. I have had it a long time. It only happens on parts, not all of my body. I have seen the doctor. Do you have any suggestions?
A. Thank you for the detail. If someone has suddenly started sweating excessively or if they are having even mild night sweats, or if sweating is interfering with their life – physically or emotionally, the NHS advice is to see their GP (see the following in to the NHS website – http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Hyperhidrosis/Pages/Introduction.aspx ) so that the GP can check whether there is an underlying cause and to look at advice and help.
The NHS website expresses concern that many do seek medical help due to embarrassment or because that think nothing can be done but that help is available.
Your experience of sweating is very likely to be included, as standard, in a consultation with a Traditional Acupuncturist or Tui Na (Chinese Therapeutic Massage) Practitioner. They would initially wish you know whether you find it hard, ok, or too easy to sweat and whether you have night sweats. The answers to this are part of establishing the pattern or patterns of disharmony being experienced by that person.
One question will then lead to another to follow this process of identification, although the questions may not appear linked. Questions will include health, well-being and life style. It is the overall picture of what you are experiencing that counts rather than a single symptom.
Sweating in the daytime can be, within Chinese Medicine theory, due to a deficiency of Qi, as it takes sufficient Qi to appropriately control sweating. Sweating in the night can be, but not always, a deficiency of Yin (Yin is in effect, your cooling, more fluid side), as may be seen in menopause. In both day and night sweating, there may instead be an excess of something in the body rather than a deficiency that is part of the picture, or possibly both. Further questioning then takes this into more detail, such as questioning triggers to the sweating and where it occurs on head, limbs or body.
As well as these questions, the Traditional Practitioner would then take your pulse and look at your tongue to gain further information. The information gathered, the basic Traditional Acupuncture or Tui Na theory, is to clear where there are excesses and to nourish where there are deficiencies, as well as looking at appropriate life style advice. The overall purpose, to try to assist with the disharmony or the underlying cause.
For peace of mind, please use properly qualified practitioners, who are members of a professional body, such as, the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC).