The Greek term diaphórēsis found its way into Late Latin as diaphorēsis, which later derived into diaphoresis. According to the dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE), this concept allows referring to sweat.
Sweat is called, on the other hand, the transparent liquid secreted by the sweat glands that are located in the skin of mammals. This substance has a chemical composition similar to that of urine.
In medicine, the idea of diaphoresis is used specifically with reference to excessive sweating. The causes of diaphoresis can be varied and linked to a physiological or pathological response.
When diaphoresis is a consequence of intense physical exertion or high ambient temperature, it is a (normal) physiological reaction. On the other hand, if the diaphoresis is due to reasons such as the chronic effect of amphetamine use or the symptom of some disease, the reaction is pathological (abnormal).
It is important, therefore, to determine whether diaphoresis is a normal response of the body or a pathological consequence of some disorder. Such determination must be made by a physician.
Diaphoresis is usually pathological, presenting with symptoms such as respiratory problems, weight loss, or pain in the chest cavity. In those cases it is possible that sweating is linked to some physical inconvenience. Another detail to take into account is whether the diaphoresis occurs with the individual at rest and with a cool temperature: in this context, it is most likely a pathological condition.
Normal situations can also lead to differences in the characteristics of each person’s diaphoresis: in hot weather, when we are very nervous or when we do intense physical activities, we all sweat in different proportions and at different rates, without this being out of the ordinary. limits of “normal” from a physiological point of view. In fact, we could not survive if our body did not eliminate certain waste products in this way.
When sweating exceeds the limit of usefulness, the body no longer benefits from this activity but, on the contrary, begins to suffer from certain disorders. As mentioned above, a case of diaphoresis should be evaluated, diagnosed and treated by a health professional; the only drawback is that, as in most problems that do not invalidate us, it is up to us to seek help from a doctor.
Therefore, if we suffer from excessive sweating, we must analyze for ourselves if it only occurs in normal situations or if it also occurs at times of rest and low ambient temperature. In general, diaphoresis causes the body to be soaked with sweat, although this can also happen without a disorder being involved.
Many people confuse this concept with hyperdrosis, a disease also characterized by excessive sweating, which results in hyperactivity of the nervous system and is often the cause of diaphoresis. The latter has a much greater scope, since it can appear as a consequence of various diseases and, unlike others, requires the intervention of a specialist for its treatment.
That said, it’s understandable that doctors tend to focus on treating the causes of diaphoresis in an attempt to lessen symptoms. In fact, if the factors are pathological, it is essential to resolve them to eliminate diaphoresis. For women who suffer from menopause there is a therapy that consists of replacing estrogen. When the factors are of a psychological nature, such as anxiety or stress, then medication and relaxation techniques are very useful.