20 answers

Child with Underarm Odor

I have a 6 year old girl, and just the other day noticed an underarm odor similar to that of an adult, I was so surprised because I have not smelled any odors of that sort in my children yet ever before. She said she had been sweating a lot at school that day, due to activities, but usually no matter the activity would never give off an odor like that. WHat age do children need to start wearing deoderant?, and could this be an issue i need to seek medical attention for?

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So What Happened?™

Thank you all soooo much!, I received so many great responses, and glad I'm not alone..so it turns out it was really only that one day, she hasn't smelled much at all since, i think it also may have been attributed to her being sick with a cold the night before, but in anycase, we bought an all natural deoderant for her to use if she wishes, i'm not forcing the issue just yet..Isn't parenting FUN!! ;0)

Featured Answers

I try to avoid deoderant myself, so I use scented body powders. My daughter thinks these smell great, so she always asks to use it when she sees me putting it on (she's 6). You can get them very cheap, too, at dollar stores. Just a thought.

my six year old does too. Her older sister who is nine started about 8 years old. We do use a deodorant (not anti-perspirant). She has liked the one from trader joes unscented. It does seem to help.

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Tacos anyone?
Hi Gabrielle! My daughter is now 7 but during the summer i noticed the same thing-she was 6. I've been told that it's a pretty average age for that so that day I told her she could try some deodorant..she thought that was great! I have'nt noticed anything since, she must have been having a hormone surge..crazy is'nt! If you feel like other things are going on with her, a visit to the Dr. might make you feel better but I honestly think that some little girls will just start sooner...seems cruel does'nt it?

Best of luck!

Hi, Gabrielle--
Funny, I just had my son's 6 yr appt. and talked to the doc. about this same issue! He stinks! He has for a couple of years, off and on. What they told me was to get an x-ray taken of the bones in his hand to determine bone age. I guess they want to rule out that he is aging too fast. I am sure he is fine, but that is what they told me. They said they don't really reccomend deoderant til around 7-8. My mother told me that my older brother had this issue when he was little, and he is perfectly normal today! Who knows! Good luck, S.

I would just have her wash under her arms for now. Last year my 9 year old started smelling under her arms. I started by teaching her good hygiene for her body. It didn't help her though so I did end up getting her deoderant. Problem is she doesn't remember to put it on half the time. I couldn't imagine my 6 year old actually applying deoderant on a daily basis though if my 9 year old can't remember to do it. My 9 year old is definitely starting puberty though. Her doctor was able to tell us this year at her physical that she's in the beginning of it as there is some breast change. So you can always check with her doctor to see if she could be starting puberty early, but honestly I would say it's probably just a hygiene issue at this point.

my six year old does too. Her older sister who is nine started about 8 years old. We do use a deodorant (not anti-perspirant). She has liked the one from trader joes unscented. It does seem to help.

She could be going through early puberty. I was eight before I had all the signs of puberty and it takes a couple of years to get there.

I know mt nephew who is now 10 has been wearing deodorant since he was about 6. Some kids just sweat more than others. I would talk to your pedi to make sure, but i think its fine. I would just find something that doesnt have a lot of chemicals and dyes that would irritate her young skin.

Have her use anti-bacterial soap like dial under her armpits with a washcloth. Sometimes dead skin cells collect there and harbor bacteria (like a dirty belly-button). Then she should start washing under her armpits every day after any activity so that the bacteria has no time to multiply. Wash her clothes every day and do not let her wear dirty clothes. I would also purchase a natural deoderant and if this doesn't work then an anti-perspirant. It could also be something that she is eating ... spicy, garlicky foods, etc. Kids can be quite smelly so this isn't anything that is not normal.

Lots of great responses here. My neice was 4 when she needed to wear deorderent. Don't sweat it!

My daughter was the same way! Starting at aroudn 7 we noticed the odor. We did take her to the doctor, who recommended using Teen Spirit deodorant which is fruity scented and doesn't have all the harsh chemicals in an adult deodorant. Unfortunately, kids are physically maturing faster than in years past and because of hormones and natural acidity levels BO appears earlier and earlier. Take heart, my daughter is now 10, is used to wearing her deodorant every day and has not yet gotten her period, which the doctors estimated could happen at 9! Thank God she didn't do that, just way to young to be dealing with all that stuff. Now her pedi thinks she will likely make it to 11 before that happens.

If you have just noticed it the one time I wouldn't worry about it. My 8 year old has the occasional smelly armpit, but it's not every day (more like once every few months). Could have just been an active day. Make sure she's washing under her arms carefully and just keep checking (a friend of hers smells every single day - there is definitely a difference when you really start to hit puberty).

Much to our dismay, girls are developing earlier than they used to. My daughter (now 9) started needing-and using-deodorant when she was 5! I asked her doc. if it was appropriate for a 5 year old to be using deodorant, and he said, "Not if she needs it". She uses a Tom's of Maine brand, deodorant only, not anti-perspirant. My daughter began to develop arm pit hair not too long after the smell began. She now has breast buds and pubic hair! Too much too soon, but there's nothing we can do about it. By the way, she has a twin sister, who has not developed in the same way at all-yet! So every kid is different. Take your daughter to the store to have her pick out the scent she likes, to make it seem more acceptable, not like you're trying to hide what she's going through. Good luck.

Amazing, I am experiencing the same issue with my 9yr old. I started having her use our deodorant but she hates the smell, so we judt purchased her her very own teen deodorant. Its unbelievable that they can get the same sweety smell as we can when we use the wrong product or rush and forget to apply anti-persperant. I would try to introduce her to her very own deodorant... go and let her pick it out. We sampled the smells of a few and she picked out a really sweet smelling one. Good luck.

Unfortunately, we live in a highly toxic environment that includes many
'false estrogens' from all the chemicals arounds us, especially the ones we bring into our homes and apply to our skin! This causes early development of the reproductive system, as well as many other problems. So, many parents and children are noticing the symptoms of this hormonal disruption, including body odor, at unusually young ages. The government agencies,
[which are not controllable through a democratic process [thereby greatly diluting the sovereignty of the people in the US, and should be
unfunded instead of more heavilly supported,] do NOT do a good job, at all, of protecting people and their children from short and long term use of the multitude of harmful chemicals they allow to be marketed and used.
Using just any deodorant is a terrible idea for anyone! A purer brand that
I have researched and chosen to use is Aubrey. I feel so sorry for our families, both the adults and the children, who are facing the many problems with early development and the health risks associated with it! Many doctors do not take the elective classes that would clue them into what is actually going on, and they just chug along in ignorance, unable, and often unwilling, to educate their patients about what is going on It's a crime against humanity, as is the processing of our food supply, which is
full of brain neurotoxins used for competitive taste additives. Check out the website, thinkscapes.com, [Google] and use the search engine to find 'food supply' and you can begin to shop for much better products for you and your family. It is better to eat less and eat better than to continue to
eat these food additives every day, three times or more! Same with body creams, etc. You MUST go to the health food store and look for better replacements, one at a time it necessary, and leave all this chemical 'soup' behind! Good luck, God bless you!

Peace and Love
retired research scientist and activist

My daughter started having under-arm odor at around 7...she's always been a sweaty kid, and she got the odor early. She's now 10, very healthy, in great shape and very active...just sweats a lot, LOL!! We use mild deodorants (Tom's of Maine and Burts Bees) and they work fine for her. She also has problems with her hair getting greasy more quickly than before, so she's having to shower almost every day now. Kids are just like adults, some are more sweaty and greasy than others and need to bathe more often and use more products. I never did as a child and really don't have a big problem as an adult, but my husband remembers needing deodorant early and constantly needing to wash his hair (which he still does), so she must take after him, poor thing! LOL!! She is rather impressed to be using adult products now though, and its been easy to get her to remember to do so. Good luck with it!!

When your child starts having odor issues is when they should start using deodorant. Also talk with her pediatrician about this issue. You especially do not want the others children to tease her about her oder problem. I know she's seems still young but her body maybe more mature than you desire it to be. Good luck

I have a 9 year old who had this since she was 7. Check with your doctor to make sure that she is not having other issues * have heard of girls going though puberty too early or having other hormonal issues) and if not, we used Tom's of ME (just) deodorant - and no aluminum. I also have found that she can not wear polyester pj's as she sweats to much in them. She wear almost all cotton - a fleece over a cotton shirt during the day and only cotton pj's. She also has started taking a shower in the morning rather than the night, and that has made a big difference.

I try to avoid deoderant myself, so I use scented body powders. My daughter thinks these smell great, so she always asks to use it when she sees me putting it on (she's 6). You can get them very cheap, too, at dollar stores. Just a thought.

I noticed the same odor in my 8 yr old yesterday. She said the same thing that she had been sweating alot.
i smelled the armpits of her shirt, which did not smell. I am considering letting her use baby powder. If that does not work maybe teen speed stick. I'm really not sure of what to do either.

I have an 8 year old sister that had the same problem. My mother took her to the pediatrician and they ran tests to see if her body was aging faster than her chronological age. Her tests came out normal for now, she is starting puberty early and we are supposed to keep an eye on her growth and signs of hair under her arms. I think you should bring this to your pediatrician's attention.

Mother of 3 Devin 7, Donovan 5, Mya 3

as long as she does not have any other signs of early puberty I would not worry. If you have concerns then check with her doctor.

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