Do you smell a weird odor from your body that makes you feel uncomfortable? Do not panic; body odor is a common problem that you can treat alone without a doctor’s help. Well, unless it’s a chronic odor that needs medical attention.
But what is body odor?
Body odor occurs when your sweat comes into contact with the bacteria on your skin to release a nasty smell. Sweating, however, is very natural because it is how your body regulates its temperature. Therefore, sweating is odorless, but the bacteria break down the keratin protein to produce the unpleasant odor that you smell.
Scientifically, body odor is also known as bromhidrosis. Read on.
What Is The Cause Of Body Odor?
Usually, body odor is typical in teens in puberty because of the high levels of androgen hormones. However, androgens are not active in a kid; that’s why it is hard to smell the child’s sweat. Some activities can trigger androgens releasing body odor. For instance;
- Weighty exercise like lifting heavy objects
- Extreme warm or hot weather
- Excess body weight
- Imbalanced hormones
- Specific health conditions such as diabetes, kidney and liver disease
- Various prescriptions, like antidepressants
- Fatty foods, oils, or strong-scented foods like garlic, onions, and curry can leak through your pores, causing body odor.
Where Does Body Odor Occur?
Usually, most people only experience body odor from their armpits after sweating. Still, the odor-causing bacteria are also present in the groins, feet, around the anus, upper thighs, and more.
Moreover, some people fail to notice they have body odor because they are not sweating on their armpits. If you experience heavy sweating even on your palms, it would be best to treat the whole body as the odor can start to seep sooner than expected. Besides, it’s better to be ready to prevent.
How to Treat Body Odor
Are you disturbed by the odor from your body? Luckily, it is possible to cure and even prevent it. How so?
- Preferably, you should use talc-free body and foot powder to soothe your body and prevent any odor from your body. Also, you can try to use a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide. To make this solution, mix 1 cup of water with one teaspoon of peroxide. Using a clean washcloth, wipe the affected area like the armpits, groins, and feet gently to avoid bruising yourself. Most likely, this solution will kill the bacteria causing the awful smell.
- Going to the gym will result in the body sweating a lot. Therefore, it would help wash your fitness gear after every gym session to ensure the sweat is gone. A sweaty gym kit is a breeding ground for bacteria.
- Because there are foods that cause body odor, it would be best to avoid them. However, if you are on a strict diet and have to use the components causing the smell, you should talk to your doctor or dietician about your concern. This way, they will suggest a good solution or advice better.
- If you have hyperhidrosis or same as excessive sweating, it would be best to seek medical attention. Sometimes, excessive sweating can be more than just lifting heavy objects. Therefore, some situations would require aggressive treatment to help end the condition. Please avoid self-medication and visit your doctor for a diagnosis and treatment plan.
Remember, the medicine may need continuous use or different phases with different drugs, so be ready to adhere to the doctor’s advice.
How to Prevent Body Odor
Because body odor is not something to wish even on your worst enemy, it would be best to prevent it. Besides, prevention is always better than treatment, so avoid the odor before it sets in. therefore, you need to;
- Even without anyone’s advice, always take a bath daily and preferably twice a day, morning and night, before going to bed. This will relieve the fatigue of a long day at work and make you sleep fresh from all the day’s sweating.
- Always wash your clothes daily and put on clean ones. Repeating previously worn clothes makes the bacteria transfer back to your body to cause body odor. You should not wear dirty clothes, even on a clean body.
- If you have no underlying condition that needs a strict diet, please avoid foods and spices that can ooze from your body, causing an unpleasant smell. Yes, it is possible to smell the garlic from your body even if you had a meal with it on the previous day.
- After taking a shower, it would be best to put on an antiperspirant before you get in bed. Most likely, you will not sweat when sleeping, so the antiperspirant will work well. Contrary to applying it in the morning after showering, the sweat will wash away the antiperspirant, making it useless against daytime sweating.
- Also, note that antiperspirants are not deodorants. Deodorants only conceal the smell of sweat but do not prevent sweating. Still, some deodorants can mix with sweat and produce even a worse odor; therefore, you need to choose them wisely.
Conversely, antiperspirants are chemical elements that diminish sweating. Preferably, it would be better to look for a product that is both a deodorant and an antiperspirant to reduce the sweat and mask the little that would escape. Besides, two is better than one.
- Keep the areas of the body that are likely to cause body odor dry. Preferably, ensure your underarms, feet, and even the groins are always dry. Better still, shave your underarms and groins to avoid sweats trapping in the area. Bacteria are fond of breeding in moist areas, so a dry place will only make it impossible to thrive.
- For your feet, make sure you dry in between the toes to avoid cracking, which can be painful. Also, change your socks daily and wear clean and dry socks with dry shoes. This way, moist air will not be trapped in the shoes allowing the bacteria to thrive and cause an unpleasant smell.
Generally, body odor is something that brings shame and low self-esteem in most people. Instead of avoiding being in public or wearing heavy clothes to conceal the smell, be bold and take a step to solve your condition. Besides, it is doable!