Excessive sweat or foul smelling body odor causes discomfort and embarrassment. Sometimes these things can be partially camouflaged with deodorants, showers, towels, and a change of clothes. But, none of these short term fixes address the cause. The next morning, the same sweat concerns that plagued you yesterday will continue to plague you.
If you’re frustrated with your sweating and want to find a solution, look to the East. Many non-specific symptoms that can not be included in Western medical diagnosis become a crucial part of the diagnosis in Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture.
Sweating is one of those “non-specific” items that Chinese Medicine takes very seriously. They consider any abnormal sweating a key symptom that always requires attention. Many times, sweating can provide the final important clue to determine a medical diagnosis.
Well, how does that work? I sweat, so what?
Most people are acutely aware of how and when they sweat, especially if it’s profuse sweating or spontaneous sweating. They’ll know if they sweat only on the head, if it’s under the armpits and accompanied with a strong smell, or if they have spontaneous sweating all over the body. Whatever it is, people will know exactly how they sweat because it’s embarrassing. They also realize that other people do not sweat in the same way.
Chinese medicine realizes people sweat differently because they sweat for different reasons. Each of us was born with a unique constitutional type that has been impacted by our lifestyle, age, and gender. These factors can gather together and change the harmony of our body causing a variety of non-specific symptoms with sweating being just one of them.
Over 5,000 years, Chinese medicine has determined that people sweat in many unique, repetitive ways. They researched each of these different patterns of sweating to identify the overall imbalance in the body.
To give you some idea of the variety of different ways people sweat, look at some of the ways sweating is classified. Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture classify sweating by when it happens. Sweating can either happen during the day or at night. Someone might find they are fine during the day, but as the day continues, they find themselves getting warmer and warmer and actually sweating towards evening.
Sweating can also be classified to different areas of the body. A person may sweat only on the forehead, or the head, or on the hands or feet, or just the hands, or maybe just the palms of the hands, or the arms and legs, or the whole body. An example could be a person finds they are just fine when they are outside. But, after being inside for a short time, they began to sweat profusely from the head. This sweating may began to move down to the armpits, lower back, and finally legs. They like carrying a Kleenex or towel to wipe their foreheads.
The quality of the sweat is also taken into consideration. The sweat could be a yellow sweat which stains clothing. The sweat could also have a strong odor.
By looking at the specifics of excessive sweating, Chinese Medicine can determine a root cause for the sweat and identify why it is happening. Like Western Medicine, symptoms are used to determine a diagnosis. Unlike Western Medicine, Chinese Medicine takes into account non-specific symptoms, and therefore, can treat a person long before a serious illness appears. In Western Medicine, the symptoms are used to determine the disease. In Chinese Medicine, the Western disease diagnosis is considered a symptom of the body imbalances. Chinese Medicine makes a constitutional diagnosis which can take into consideration symptoms and a Western disease diagnosis. So, one Western disease may have many different treatments based on the key reason the body is allowing the imbalance to happen.
For excessive sweating, this may be a blessing from above to know that there is an answer out there that can help eliminate embarrassing sweat instead of just camouflaging sweat.