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Dermadry® BLOG

Hyperhidrosis in the Netherlands: Interview with the Founder of the Dutch Hyperhidrosis Society

By Sam Nardi / 2021 Dec 9th
Dermadry Team

The hyperhidrosis community is filled with resilient people who demonstrate solidarity and a sense of community. No one embodies these values more than Thijs B., the founder of the Dutch Hyperhidrosis Society.

Thijs built an online forum for people who suffer from excessive sweating in the Netherlands to help and support each other. From a small website upon its launch 2005, it has now become a website that attracts more than 1.6 million people each month. Dermadry spoke with Thijs to better understand how hyperhidrosis is perceived in the Netherlands, what inspired him to create his community and why iontophoresis isn’t well known yet.

Why did you create this forum?

I created the forum in 2005 because there simply wasn't one in the Netherlands or information in Dutch. I suffer from severe axillary hyperhidrosis (excessive underarm sweating) and tried to look for fellow sufferers to learn more about their experiences and gain more information on different treatments. Back then, there were only English sites about hyperhidrosis. I have a computer (IT) background, so I decided to start my own forum.

What do you feel it brought to the community?

As the years went by, I got more and more users who were all very happy to share their experiences. I've been told by many people that they were so glad to have finally found a website where they can be who they are and get good information and help. A plus is that they can be anonymous on the internet and our forum.

What's it like having hyperhidrosis in The Netherlands? Are physicians aware of this condition and how to treat it?

I think most dermatologists in The Netherlands are familiar with hyperhidrosis. We now have two specialized hyperhidrosis centres affiliated to hospitals in The Netherlands. General practitioners (GPs) are not always aware of the treatment possibilities for hyperhidrosis. Patients must first go to a GP and if you meet a good one they'll send you to a good dermatologist who knows all about the treatments. I read a lot from forum users about GPs not knowing how to treat hyperhidrosis, which leads them to be unable to help their patients. In 2010, I decided to start the Dutch Hyperhidrosis Society, which I'm now the chairman of, and together we fight to raise awareness of hyperhidrosis among GPs, and erase the stigma and taboo associated with the condition.

What is the general perception about iontophoresis in The Netherlands? What do you feel people don't know about and should learn about iontophoresis?

Honestly, I think iontophoresis is not as well known in the Netherlands as it should be. Good iontophoresis equipment is quite expensive, the effects are temporary, and generally only hands and feet can be treated. Although I know there are face masks and units for axillary hyperhidrosis too. Unfortunately, the insurance companies in the Netherlands don't cover the purchase of iontophoresis equipment. People should have more access to good information about iontophoresis preferably in Dutch.

For more information, please visit the Dutch Hyperhidrosis Society website: www.overmatigzweten.nl

Help more people discover iontophoresis treatment!

Iontophoresis treatment for hyperhidrosis is still not very well known in certain countries, such as the Netherlands. Have you tried Dermadry and are satisfied with your results? Help us help more people achieve the dryness they deserve with iontophoresis treatment by leaving your thoughts on your Dermadry experience here!

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