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Child's Body Odor
July 2003

Q. My 6 year old comes home from school and has body odor mostly under her arm pits. Could you help me find more information on this?

A. The problem of body odor is unusual in a child. Everybody perspires or sweats as a means of regulating body temperature. The perspiration itself is mostly water, but when mixed with the bacteria that normally reside on the skin can lead to odor. Normal regular bathing with soap and water is sufficient to keep the odor at a minimum, but in some cases this is not sufficient.

In adults, deodorants will help inhibit the bacteria and resulting odor, and anti-perspirants will lessen the amount of sweating that occurs. In addition an antibacterial soap may be helpful. Check with your pediatrician to determine what is appropriate for your child.

http://kidshealth.org/teen/your_body/take_care/hygiene_basics_p2.html

http://www.mayoclinic.com/invoke.cfm?id=DS00305

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