Real Talk

What to Do When Your Pre-Teen Has Body Odor

Body odor in pre-teens is completely normal because of hormonal changes that cause them to sweat more. Here’s what you can do to manage it!

Body odor can be an overwhelming experience to deal with for many parents of pre-teens. However, this is completely natural and often occurs between 8 to 12 years old. At times, it can even linger throughout their teen years. This is because as children hit puberty, their hormones are changing. It stimulates their glands and increases perspiration — especially in the underarm and groin areas. The increase of sweat combined with bacteria that live on their skin creates body odor. Even if your pre-teen bathes daily, body odor is not an issue of hygiene. To help manage it, here are some things you can do.

How to Prevent Body Odor in Pre-Teens

1. Use an antibacterial soap

body odor pre-teen

Baby soaps may no longer be enough to keep the bacteria at bay. So it might be time to change your pre-teen’s soap to an antibacterial one. Cetaphil’s Ultra Protect Antimicrobial Cleansing Bar is gentle enough to use daily but effective at cleaning and soothing the skin. Moreover, it won’t strip the natural moisture barriers of your pre-teen’s skin.

2. Wear deodorant

body odor pre-teen

Some parents might still be in denial that their pre-teens already need a deodorant. But a good introduction would be deodorant powder like MILCU. It contains potash alum to neutralize body odor and will not darken skin or stain clothes. Plus, it’s scent-free! No need to worry about any strong ingredients making your pre-teen’s sensitive skin react.

3. Boil clothes in hot water

Sometimes, freshly laundered clothes may look clean. But this can be deceiving, especially if your pre-teen wore the clothes while playing outside under the sun. Combined with the natural bacteria on their skin, the odor can be locked into the fabrics. One way to get rid of the odor is by boiling clothes in hot water, if possible. If the fabrics are sensitive, try soaking them in water and baking soda before washing them with laundry detergent.

4. Invest in moisture-wicking clothes

Moisture-wicking clothes quickly absorb sweat and disperse it for rapid evaporation before the bacteria can even act on the skin and cause body odor. There are many brands that sell moisture-wicking clothes for pre-teens like Uniqlo’s Airism Line, Old Navy, and Nike.

Doing these can ensure your pre-teen doesn’t have to suffer from body odor and feel insecure or embarrassed!

Looking for more stories on pre-teens? Here are some:

When Kids and Teens Touch Themselves: Is It Normal?

Why Parenting A Teen Sometimes Feels Like A Fight For Control

How To Stop Our Gamer Kids’ and Teens’ Rage

Shop for Modern Parenting's print issues through these platforms.
Download this month's Modern Parenting magazine digital copy from:
Subscribe via [email protected]