January 6, 2012 - submitted by Madalena, United States of America

Q. TEAM ORACLE QUESTION - #53
I am 15 years old. I think I suffer from hyperhydrosis. It's not that much of a big deal, but it is uncomfortable and ruins my self-esteem.
I mean, I already feel like a freak most of the time, but this makes me feel even weirder and disgusting.
My parents won't take me to the doctor, because they think I'm making everything up. I'm starting to get desperate and I don't know what to do.
This is not really something I can tell my friends about, so you're the one that occurred to me.
Please help me. I'm desperate. I don't know what to do.
Love from a Coldplayer,
Madalena


The Oracle replies:

As with most medical queries it's not wise to try and diagnose and treat the symptoms. I can't really look at the causes either but I can try and help in other ways. Firstly, you do need to find out whether you're dealing with hyperhidrosis or not. That will require a visit to the doctor - with or without your parents. Is there another family member who can go with you? Or at the very least help you talk to them? It's your body and your life and though you say "it's not that much of a big deal", it clearly is or you wouldn't have asked for help. The impact it's having on your life sounds like a big deal to me so I'm hoping you won't continue to suffer in silence. This was your first step, so keep that going. I advise you to speak to a school counsellor so you have someone to talk to at a place you have to go to almost every day. You're not a freak - with or without excessive perspiring - but in most cases there are ways to manage, control or cure the problem. Sweating is a natural body function and especially in the teen years it can become troublesome so don't rule out the possibility that you have yet to find what works for you. Try different anti-perspirants, make sure you're keeping hydrated (I know that sounds mad) as that will help the body function correctly. There are plenty websites that can help you try different options. It's a shame you don't feel you can talk to your friends, you never know one or two may be going through a similar thing. Growing up can be a pain sometimes with all the weird things that happen to our bodies but don't worry, there's often a simple remedy but it will take your courage to tackle it head on. Try not to feel embarrassed by it as you're not alone - hold your head up high. Over to you.

Hello Madalena - Does your school have a school nurse or health office? Please stop in and tell them about your problem. A wellness professional should be able to ask you the right questions to determine what the problem is and perhaps give you some advice to help you. If hyperhidrosis is the problem, the professional can write a recommendation that you can show to your parents to encourage them to take you to your family physician who can then treat you. If you don't have a nurse or wellness professional at school, I encourage you to talk to a trusted coach or teacher who can then guide you. Good luck and best wishes for good health. Love, Jill.

I want to start by saying that I admire you for sharing your story. From your short message to the Oracle, I learned a very good thing about you. I learned that you are a brave girl, and that will take you very far in life. This message shows that you have courage, which is amazing.
What I think you should do is, first of all, take a deep breath and remember that you are never alone - there are always therapists, support groups and other people who can help you. Let your parents cool off for a little while and after some time, tell them again. (Parents can be hard to understand from time to time, but they still love you.)
In the meantime, focus on yourself and on good things in life. If your parents refuse to take you to the doctor, I think you should go by yourself. If no one wants to listen, write a story and let your feelings out that way. If you can't share your secret with your friends, share it with someone else. If you feel like there's no way out, look in the mirror and tell yourself that you will find a way. Whenever you feel like there is no one who understands you, remember me - I understand you. Everything WILL be okay. I promise. You just need to believe in yourself! Good luck! Stay strong. Best wishes, Medina.

I am so sorry you are going through a difficult situation in your life. You are aware and enabled to deal with it I can tell. Many resources exist and are available. You first need to accept it, get comfortable with it and then use your intellect and resources to combat it.This is something that you can do if you put your attention and heart into. Yes! Let your friends know... where else will you find support? True friends will see you through others are fakes and don't empathize with your situation. There are medical interventions and mental interventions that can be resources. Best of luck, and happy new year. SD, in IL, USA.

I'm not really in a position to comment on medical conditions, for obvious reasons. However I believe it is imperative you seek a professional diagnosis before you can properly deal with your symptoms. Can you speak to an older, trusted, female relative to book a Doctor's appointment? This condition is manageable with medical treatment.
This may also be just a part of your body's development and could disappear as fast as the years will with unproductive worrying. Are there certain things that start your problems - school lessons or certain food/drinks? Trying to identify these will also help you focus and remain calm. Please try to concentrate on positives in your life, try making a list of them with a good friend and share your feelings. I remember how tough the teenage years are, you will get through this, and as (in my humble opinion) all "Coldplayers" are beautiful people you will also remain one too. Kind Regards and Good Luck, Jonathan.

As the parent of a daughter who suffered from hyperhydrosis from birth. I recognized it and sought help for her from the beginning, but all the various things didn't help. I want you to tell your parents that they will be happy if do everything in their power to find help for you. I saw the embarrassment and heartache my daughter suffered at the hands of insensitive classmates, and would once again ask the doctor what could be done. We tried creams, the electrical shock machine, relaxation, to no avail. She had no self-confidence. By the time I finally found a doctor who had an answer for her she was 19 (surgery called a sympathectomy) and gave up career dreams. The sweat glands will compensate elsewhere: she now sweats more on her back and behind her knees, but it's nothing like dealing with drippy hands, feet and underarms. I hope you can be heard. Don't give up, don't get desperate, believe that you are more than this, and there are people who value you, and someday when you're on your own you can solve your problem yourself if it can't be done now.
Sincerely, A mother.


I'll share my own experience. You don't mention the part of the body it is feet, hands, armpits or face. When I was younger I had same problem - it was on my feet and face, especially on my nose. Sometimes my palms and back too. Most probably it's going to kind of disappear as we learn to deal with the stress better only by years, it's just a matter of time. I would suggest simple daily hygienic and patience, age 15 kind of sucks I know! And some people are a bit more sensitive, both emotionally and physically, nothing wrong in that. I would recommend to LISTEN to your body and its reaction (on food for example).
Kiti, Belgium X

I'm about to turn 18 and I know exactly what you're going through. The same thing happened to me in ninth grade and I tried reaching out numerous times to my parents who refused to listen to me. The psychological trouble alone from knowing you can't really turn to anyone about your problem, and then having your own parents scorn your pleas is heartbreaking, so first off I would like to apologize to you for anyone who can't fully empathize with your situation.
What I did was write a letter to my pediatrician explaining the situation and how my parents wouldn't help me. For my next appointment my doctor asked me a couple of questions and then told me to try the over the counter deodorant Certaindri it actually worked pretty well for me, but I had to tell him that it stopped working as well after a while and he prescribed me to another one that I currently use right now. Try writing a letter to your pediatrician or someone you see whenever you go to the doctor. I hope this helps. Belinda.


It's always very sad and painful to read that a 15 years old girl is suffering.
The only thing I feel to say is that maybe every problem at the end of the game, resides in somebody's head. Madalena, maybe you start to sweat just because you know that any moment sooner or later you'll start to sweat. When you'll stop worrying about that you'll stop suffer of that. Most likely it's just a matter of getting confidence in yourself, try to see it as a temporary pain in the ass that comes with youth like acne. One day you'll be a realized beautiful woman and hopefully a good mother and this will be just a story to tell your kids to keep 'em humble. Francesco.

I feel your pain. I'm almost completely certain I have ADHD and I'm in the same position. Telling people gets me nowhere. Not only that, but I'm also bisexual and, in the community I live in, telling other people would not only get me nowhere but might put me in danger. I wish I could say there's an easy way out, but I can't.
Fortunately, like me, in a few years you'll likely leave your parents' home and enter a wildly different community, be it college or elsewhere. If you can't find help now, you will then, especially since then you can visit a doctor or specialist on your own.
Until then, if you are a member of some online community, like a forum or message board, I would recommend sharing your trouble there, with as many details as you are comfortable with. You can usually find someone who can help or at least sympathize with you.
If you start to feel like a freak, stop. Thanks to the God-sent miracle of social relativity, there is no such thing. If someone else is making you feel like a freak, don't ever let it get to you. If you feel really down, don't be scared to do anything you love to do as a form of escape. Escapism is not a bad thing or just avoiding the issue. Escapism is a wonderful release and a way to save yourself from despair. May God bless you. Love, Elah.


Feeling different sucks and that's the only way to put it. The first step is to know your not alone. Here is a link to the international hyperhidrosis society page. This will help you know your not alone. Second off (This is the tough one) Tell your friends. If they have a problem with it they are not really your friends. Chances are they will still like you and try to help. They probably have some problem of their own. I know personally I'm very shy. Which makes life some times hard to live sometimes. Hope this helps. Laura from Ohio.

First of all, don't let this thing ruin your self esteem, hyperhidrosis sounds like a very difficult thing to live with, and I can understand why your parents want to think that you don't have it. You're not a freak by any means, and everyone on this earth has flaws like this. I have mine, and when I told my parents about my problem, in this case, depression, they shrugged it off by saying I was just sad. I suggest going to see someone trained in this profession, to back you up on your claim, and if no one is nearby, you could get in contact with one, over the phone, or the internet.
Also, upon looking up various treatments for hyperhidrosis, I found that there are procedures that can be done to treat it, and medicines prescribed to absolve it. While some of these may be hard to access, I've also read that relaxation and meditation are good ways to prevent hyperhidrosis, so I'd give that a try. Best wishes, and good luck, Bradley H.


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