If there is one thing that can instantly displease you when you meet someone is their body odor. The foul smell can make you feel uncomfortable, and you definitely wouldn’t want other people to feel the same about you.
If you have ever experienced bad body odor, you may have wondered how to get rid of body odor. You may want to know the various body odor treatments available. But it can be helpful first to understand what causes body odor so that you can decide the best treatment for your problem.
What causes body odor?
Body odor is an unpleasant smell that our bodies give off when the bacteria that live on our skin break down sweat into acid. While everyone has some natural body smell, the odor problem may first become evident during puberty and may require proper body odor treatments to keep it away.
- Obese people or people who have certain medical conditions like diabetes are more prone to body odor problems.
- There is a general misconception among people that it is the sweat that gives rise to body odor. While it is true that people who sweat more may have a bigger issue at hand, but in all reality, sweat is odorless. It is the rapid growth of bacteria in the sweat that can cause body odor. In most cases, it occurs in areas such as feet, groin, armpits, genitals, belly button or behind the ears.
For effective body odor treatments, understanding the different types of sweating can be helpful. There are two types of sweat glands in the human body: eccrine glands and apocrine glands.
- The eccrine glands secrete sweat to cool the body down when you are exposed to heat or when you are performing any physical activity. This sweat is usually watery and does not have any unpleasant smell.
- It is the lipids and proteins secreted by the apocrine glands that are smelly. These lipids and proteins become food for the bacteria, which thrive by feeding on them, disrupt the outer shell of the proteins, and cause odor.
- Seek medical treatment if your body odor problem is persistent.