By Lola Omowaye
Armpit odour can be embarrassing, capable of causing problems in social and professional relationships. Many people hate the way their armpit smells and it becomes important to do all possible to prevent it. Lucky enough, this problem has remedy.
If you have any reason to raise your arm at some point during the day, you could be knocked out by the odour from your armpits. And if you cannot stand it, imagine how those people around you must be reacting to this odour.
Some scientists believe that armpit odour was a way to attract potential mates. But now its obvious that for most of us, any such attraction has vanished from our culture. In fact, armpit odour is such a turn-off.
Naturally, armpit sweat itself does not stink. The smell comes from the bacteria that feed on the sweat that grows by the specialised sweat glands found in the armpits, the scalp and in the groin area. Bacteria like this fatty sweat is released when people get hot, work out or become stressed. The longer your armpits stay warm and moist, the more the bacteria will feed and release foul odour in the process.
Bathing daily is crucial to dealing with these bacteria. Preferably, bath more than once a day when the weather is hot or you are especially active. Deodorant soap that contains antibacterial ingredients will help greatly. Damp clothing are other favourite homes for bacteria, so use freshly laundered ones when you bathe.
Deodorant and antiperspirant work for many people. It’s hard to argue with the ease of being able to roll on or spray after your bath and know that you won’t smell, at least for several hours. Deodorants fight the bacteria that feed on your sweat. But their main job is to make the skin under your armpit not conducive for bacteria. While antiperspirants stop the production of sweat that the bacteria feed upon. They have ingredients such as aluminium salts that plug the sweat glands. Many of them also contain some bacteria-fighting ingredients but their main aim is to keep armpit dry.
Now that you know bacteria are the cause of smelly armpits, it makes sense to keep your armpit as dry as possible. You can use wet wipes to dry your armpit each time you perspire.
Remember that even if you bathe every day, it is important you do not wear the same outfit again if you are battling smelly armpits. The bath will remove the bacteria, but your unwashed clothes will still harbour the bacteria. Wash your clothes before wearing them.
Women usually have less odour emitting from their armpits compared to men, as most tend to shave their armpits. If you do not shave your armpits and suffer from armpit odour, it is time to start shaving all the necessary areas.
There are different remedies to armpit odour. Squeeze fresh lemon juice and dilute it with a bit of water. Apply this under your arms, making it tough for bacteria to survive and proliferate. Make sure you let the juice air-dry before wearing your clothes.
Stress and anxiety are known to increase the production of sweat. If you learn to control your stress levels, you reduce the amount of sweat your body produces.
When you notice you are prone to having armpit odour, it is important you shower regularly. In most cases, just bathing once a day may not help and you may have to bathe twice a day to get rid of the odour. Use antibacterial soap and deodorant to kill the bacteria. Avoid wearing clothes more than once. After each use, wash your clothes to kill the bacteria and perspiration that was transferred to the clothes.