Doctor, why do people keep saying my armpits smell bad? How can I get rid of the odor? This is basically a question that every patient with underarm odor asks me. In modern society, body odor has seriously affected their normal social interaction and making friends. Although the problem of body odor is more obvious in foreigners such as Europe and the United States, the incidence rate in my country is only about 4%, but it affects more than 50 million people. life, and even bring psychological impact, so we still need to find out the cause as soon as possible and solve the problem in a timely manner.
From the smell of chopped green onion to the smell of cumin and sour, it is all underarm odor
Underarm odor, also known as body odor (English: Body Odor, BO for short), refers to any unpleasant odor emitted from the underarms of the human body. The strange phenomenon is that sometimes the patient cannot smell it, but the people around him have long been unbearable. , Some people say that it smells of cumin, garlic, smelly socks, and even toilets. It can be seen that people with underarm odor will not dare to approach, let alone make friends. The opposite sex is also discouraged. persuade to quit.
What causes underarm odor?
Sweating is your body’s way of regulating your body temperature, and while sweat itself is almost odorless, when your sweat encounters bacteria on the surface of your skin, it can create an unpleasant odor. Bacteria use sweat as a breeding ground and multiply rapidly, and the smell should be the product of the decomposition of keratin on the skin surface by bacteria.
Many people first discover that underarm odor begins in adolescence, because the rise of male hormones leads to the development of sweat glands, which will make body odor problems manifest. Sweat glands cover most of the human body and are directly on the surface of the skin. There are two main types of sweat glands (eccrine and apocrine). Sweating is an important way to help us cool down. There are sweat glands called apocrine sweat glands that appear in areas that contain a lot of hair follicles, such as the groin and armpits. Instead of opening to the surface of the skin, the apocrine sweat glands drain sweat into the hair follicles and then out to the surface of the skin. When the body heats up, the sweat glands secrete sweat to cool down the body temperature. The places with abundant hair follicles are easy to breed bacteria, so the apocrine sweat glands are most likely to emit odors caused by bacteria, and even mixed with the taste of certain foods and drinks ingested by the human body.
How to treat underarm odor?
Treatment for underarm odor depends on the severity of the body odor and the underlying cause. The odor can be more than just bacteria. It can also be caused by unsanitary or not using the correct skin cleanser, and there may even be an underlying condition that needs to be treated. Therefore, it is necessary to confirm the cause of underarm odor with the attending doctor at the first time, and then choose the treatment method.
1. Use antiperspirant
Using an over-the-counter (OTC) antiperspirant or deodorant after showering every day can help eliminate underarm odor. This is a common method for most patients, and sometimes you need to try different types to see which works best for you. Antiperspirants help reduce sweat production by temporarily blocking the pores that release sweat. The less sweat on the surface of the skin, the less odor it produces; deodorants can eliminate sweat odors, but not the sweat itself, but these products are often Not available for those with alcohol allergies.
2. Prescription deodorant
If an over-the-counter deodorant doesn’t work, consider a prescription deodorant with your doctor. Botox, for example, is known to many people for smoothing facial wrinkles, but it has other uses, such as injecting Botox into the sweat glands to reduce sweating and odor (a common treatment for people with hyperhidrosis). ). However, this is not a permanent solution. The injections only last a few months, so they need to be repeated if necessary. If more severe symptoms develop, doctors recommend more individualized treatment options.
Prevent underarm odor
It is recommended to do some things to prevent the occurrence of underarm odor, such as:
1. Bathing every day, as well as after strenuous exercise, can remove odor-causing bacteria and sweat.
2. Wear loose and breathable fabrics, such as cotton, linen, and hygroscopic blends, especially when you sweat a lot during exercise.
3. Shaving armpit hair may significantly reduce underarm odor.
4. Pay attention to your diet and avoid some high-fat, high-oil foods, and strong-smelling foods (such as garlic, curry, and onions), which can seep into your pores and aggravate body odor.
In addition, the stress response also causes sweat glands to secrete sweat, and stress management and anxiety-reducing techniques can also help you reduce your physiological sweating response. The best way to prevent underarm odor on a daily basis is to wash and use an antiperspirant or deodorant daily and after sweating, as well as shaving your underarms.