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Avoid 6 Health Woes That Ruin a Date

Experts offer tips on preventing embarrassing problems that can derail a promising relationship.

Dealing With Sweat continued...

For those who sweat excessively (a condition called hyperhidrosis), new treatments have emerged. Botulinum toxin, known for its ability to reduce wrinkles, also reduces sweat by interfering with nerve endings that control sweat. Antiperspirants with up to 20% aluminum chloride block pores so sweat has nowhere to go. There is even a medicine, taken orally, that can prevent sweat glands from stimulating sweat. Called anticholinergics and used to treat depressiondepression and other mental illnesses, they can cause a number of side effects and are used rarely.

Because, sweating plays an important role in cooling the body and ridding it of impurities, measures to halt this natural function of the body should be approached with caution and under the guidance of a dermatologist, Mirkin says.

Gastrointestinal Woes

Getting a dose of your dinner after you've eaten, doubling over with gas pains, or, worse yet, expelling gas -- none of these gastrointestinal nightmares will win you a second date.

To tame the storm you've got to coat it with a layer of antacids. Preferably, use one that contains alginic acid, urges Patricia Raymond, MD, a gastroenterologist. "When you take a big slug of it by mouth, it sits on top of whatever you've eaten, so the stuff coming up is not acidic," she says.

While you can shrug off occasional acid refluxacid reflux, regular bouts can signal something more serious. "If you're going through a fair amount of antacids -- more than a couple times a week -- see your gastroenterologist to make sure you don't have something more serious," Raymond suggests.

Where does gas come from? "Either you've swallowed gas or it's generated in the bowels," Raymond tells WebMD.

Yes, you can actually "eat" gas, or air. There's even a name for ingesting air: aerophagia. Raymond explains the various ways that air gets absorbed. Drinking through straws is a common way. Lots of people tend to swallow air when they're nervous, notes Raymond. Certain ways of chewing can also cause you to swallow air. The good news about gas produced via aerophagia? It smells, well, just like air.

If your gas smells far less innocuous than air, chances are you've eaten something that is gas-producing. Raymond recommends doing a "food diary" to determine and eliminate the offending food. Dairy products, whey, and cruciferous vegetables top the list of gas-inducing foods, she explains.

Once you've identified the culprit? "Get it out of your life," Raymond advises.

Annoying Allergy Symptoms

Sneezing all over your date is sure to put a damper on things. Whether you suffer from this or other annoying allergy symptoms like a runny nose or itchy, watery eyes, you'll want to rein them in before a big date.

The first step toward stifling sniffles and such is to find out whether they're related to seasonal rhinitis, which usually strikes in spring and fall, or if perennial (year-round) allergiesallergies are to blame. Once you've homed in on the cause, you can avoid triggers and, if necessary, use medications to keep symptoms at bay.

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