Last night as I put the kids to bed, we began talking about going back to school. They shared some of fears and worries as well as their wish and excitement. The conversation turned from them going to school to what it was like for me when I went to school. Since my oldest child is entering grade 4 it only seemed right that my mind drifted to that time period. I remember my first few weeks of school. We had assigned seating and I was placed by George*. He wasn’t in my class the previous year, so I was excited to meet a new friend. People around me kept whispering and I heard the phrase “Smelly George!”. I didn’t take me long to realize that my new seat buddy was known as “Smelly George” for a reason. Welcome to Puberty!
After reminiscing about that school situation, I began to reevaluate my son’s hygiene and wonder when he too would enter this wonderful world of puberty. I know its coming soon and I want to take help my son stay on top of his hygiene, so that he doesn’t become “Smelly H”.
What Smells? Learning about Body Odor
They go from this…..
in a blink of the eye!
As a young man moves towards puberty, they may start noticing that they are starting to get wetter and smellier when they run around, play sports, or simply when it’s hot outside. Although, sweating is your body reaction to stress, anxiety and nervousness as a way to cool down your body when it begins to overheat. It is not actually the sweat that smells, but the breakdown of the sweat by the bacteria that lives on your skin that causes the smell. Bacteria create the body odor!
Here are three steps to help boys learn to deal with and prevent odor:
- Take a shower. Kids can get away with every other day showers or pool dips to stay clean, but as they age and enter puberty is probably the time to start showering daily. Since we learned that sweat is the result of the bacteria on your skin, washing with soap and water can help to remove any build up that may exist. Find a soap that has a fresh scent ( or Manly scent as my boys call it!) is a great way to help make you feel fresh and clean!
- Apply deodorant. Do you remember the first time you tried deodorant? I do! I took to trip to my local drug store and stared at the rows and rows of deodorant trying to decide what to buy. There were many different forms (such as a solid stick, roll-on, gel, spray, etc) and scents that it was very overwhelming. Most deodorants do the same thing, they cover the smell of sweat, it is what you smell like and how you put it on that changes. Try different kinds until you find the one that is most comfortable to you!
- Change your clothes. If you think that you are going to sweat A LOT (i.e during a sporting event, hot day, etc), you should try to bring an extra set of clothes. Not only will changing remove the sweat, preventing the bacteria from breaking it down, but it will also remove any embarrassing wet marks too!
Good hygiene habits don’t happen over night! I like to start teaching my kids good hygiene skills when they are young so that their skill will form into a habit! When the time comes to rely on these habits they will already be in place. I start my kids off with Kandoo products! I know that they are safe, natural and mild for your children skin. The brightly colour foam teaches them how to get it down right the first time.
Remember: You need the right tools to get the job done.
*name has been changed to prevent offending anyone!