Have you ever went to shake someone’s hand only to find yours slipping out of their grasp? If so, you’re not alone. Having clammy or sweaty palms is pretty common and isn’t usually something to be worried about (via Healthline), especially if you’ve been exercising or in the heat all day. Clammy skin that pops up for no reason, however, may be a sign of a serious medical condition. “Looking at the biology of sweating, normally, it’s a good thing — we need it to survive,” said Adam Friedman, MD, at the Orlando Dermatology Aesthetic and Clinical Conference. “However, hyperhidrosis is too much of a good thing — it’s an excess of what is needed for normal biology.”
Hyperhidrosis is a condition that causes a person to sweat excessively from the palms, feet, armpits, or other areas of the body (via The Mayo Clinic).
According to the International Hyperhidrosis Association, 4.8 percent of Americans are affected by hyperhidrosis. That’s an estimated 15.3 million people. Having clammy palms doesn’t necessarily mean that you have hyperhidrosis, though. Sweaty palms may be the symptom of one or more other conditions (via Healthline). “If you sweat a lot at night, it’s not hyperhidrosis!” Friedman said (via the Orlando Dermatology Aesthetic and Clinical Conference).
Common causes for clammy or sweaty palms
There are a number of reasons why one may experience clammy or sweaty palms, including (but not limited to) obesity, hypoglycemia or low blood sugar, anxiety, menopause, low blood oxygen levels, or a neurological condition (via Medical News Today). If you’re experiencing clammy skin in addition to your lips turning blue, chest pain, confusion, or loss of consciousness, seek immediate medical attention or call 911 as these symptoms could be the cause of an emergency situation (via Healthgrades).
If your clammy palms only show up on special occasions, such as a job interview, a first date, or during an exhaustive workout at the gym, there are a few things you can do to remedy the situation.
Most antiperspirants, for example, aren’t exclusive to the armpit. You can use antiperspirant on your hands to take care of that clammy, wet feeling (via Spy). You can also use baking soda to alleviate the problem. Just mix a few teaspoons of baking soda with water until it forms into a paste-like substance, rub the paste onto your hands for a few minutes, and then wash it off (via Healthline).
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