The body has nearly two million sweat glands. These glands produce
three quarts to one pint of sweat in a day. In tropical countries,
naturally, more sweat is produced. The perspiration level increases with
an increase in physical exertion or nervous tension.
perspiration, when allowed to evaporate does not cause body odour. An
offensive smell is caused when bacteria that are present on the skin get
to work on the sweat and decompose it. This is specially so in the
groin, underarms, feet or in clothing that has absorbed sweat. Diet
influences the odour too.
Two baths a day, with liberal lathering
and change of clothes in close contact with the body should take care of
the problem. Talcum powders, of the non-medicated kind, can be used
under the armpits. Deodorants or antiperspirants can be used.
commercial skin deodorants contain an antiperspirant, such as aluminum
chloride, which reduces sweating by forming a hydroxide gel in the sweat
ducts. But sweat suppressed in one area, comes out in another. The
addition of perfumes masks the odour.
Deodorant soaps do not
interfere with sweat secretion, but contain hexachlorophene which
destroys the bacteria that causes body odour.
If daily cleanliness routines do not reduce body odour, check with a doctor.