When children enter puberty, their body goes through changes. Sometimes these changes bring about a problem with body odor that average hygiene does not control.
These kids might suffer verbal abuse from their peers and alienation from the opposite sex. The teen years are tough, but to someone that receives constant complaints about their stench turns the average day horrible. Depression can set in, and that is only the beginning.
Parents can help the situation, in more ways than one. The most important is sitting down and talking to the child. By giving them a chance to voice feelings of anger or hopelessness, they have the opportunity to deal with the situation, not just ignoring or avoiding the subject.
There are things that can be done to the body to control the odor. Washing with an antibacterial soap, like Safeguard or Dial, once or twice daily helps by killing the bacteria that causes the odor. Acne cleanser that contains benzoyl peroxide is a good alternative to soap. However, excessive use could cause dry skin or irritation, so use with care.
Use a stick or roll-on antiperspirant deodorant with antibacterial metallic salts (zinc or aluminum). The antiperspirant will slow down the odorous production of the apocrine sweat glands. There is strong antiperspirants that are available through a doctor. A trim of underarm and body hair is beneficial since the hair retains sweat and odor causing bacteria.
While at school, your teen can keep moist wipes for a quick wipe down of armpits and privates. A quick dusting of talc or baby powder across the body will help to mask the body odor. If necessary, take a change of clothes or underwear and large zipper bags.
At home, try to avoid eggs and spicy foods, like garlic or cumin, as they tend to give off overpowering smells from the skin’s pores. Drinking plenty of water will help to wash out any toxins that may be causing the body odor.
Use an odor fighting laundry detergent to take smells out of clothes, and change the bed sheets regularly. Cotton clothing may help to prevent odor. A disinfectant spray such as Lysol can be used to freshen up a bedroom or family room.
There are other possible causes for body odor. Constipation is one condition that influences body odor, along with kidney and liver disease and fungal infections. If the odor problem doesn’t respond accordingly, a visit to the doctor might be in order.
Hopefully, between you and your teen, body odor will become a thing of the past. If it doesn’t, see the doctor. Prescription antiperspirants and medicine is available, and this alternative is more welcome than a peer’s ridicule.