Unmasking the Mysteries of Puberty: Tackling Teen Body Odor Head-On!

Aug 25, 2023

Applying Deodorant

Written By Dr. Jill Grimes
Thread Health Doctor and College Health Expert


Puberty is a time of significant changes for teens, including the development of body odor. Understanding and managing body odor during this stage is crucial for maintaining hygiene and confidence. Dr. Jill Grimes from Thread Health, an expert in Teen Health, offers valuable insights and tips to help tackle this common issue.

Understanding Sweat Glands and Their Role in Body Odor

There are two types of sweat glands in our body: eccrine and apocrine. Eccrine sweat glands are found all over the body and are not associated with odor. On the other hand, apocrine sweat glands are concentrated in the armpits and groin area and are responsible for body odor.

Puberty plays a significant role in activating the apocrine sweat glands. Hormonal changes during this phase cause these glands to become more active. The interaction between sweat produced by apocrine glands and bacteria on the skin is what leads to body odor. Understanding this connection is essential for effectively managing body odor during puberty.

Tips for Reducing Body Odor in Teens

To effectively manage body odor during puberty, it is essential to focus on decreasing sweat production, using antibacterial soap, and managing foot odor.

Antiperspirants play a crucial role in reducing sweat production. Dr. Grimes suggests using clinical strength antiperspirants for the best results. Applying antiperspirant to dry skin, preferably at bedtime when sweat glands are least active, can enhance its effectiveness.

Cleaning armpits with antibacterial soap is another essential step in tackling body odor. Dr. Grimes recommends using products like benzoyl peroxide washes for this purpose. Properly applying and using antibacterial soap in the shower can make a significant difference in odor management.

Keeping feet clean and dry is vital in preventing foot odor. Dr. Grimes advises bringing a second pair of cotton socks to change into during the day and alternating between pairs of shoes to avoid wearing the same shoes two days in a row. These simple yet effective tips can help teens reduce body odor and maintain good hygiene during puberty.

Thread Health: A Resource for Teen Health and Wellbeing

Thread Health offers specialized healthcare services for teens and young adults, focusing on age-appropriate care and communication. By signing up for Thread Health, users gain access to unlimited text and video consultations with experts in adolescent health, such as Dr. Jill Grimes.

This convenient and accessible service helps address common health concerns and provides valuable education on maintaining hygiene, managing puberty-related issues, and improving overall wellbeing. Encouraging teens and their families to sign up for Thread Health is a great way to support their health journey during a crucial stage in their lives.


In conclusion, understanding and managing body odor during puberty is essential for maintaining hygiene and self-confidence. Utilizing the tips and resources provided by Dr. Jill Grimes and Thread Health can help teens tackle this common issue head-on. Thread Health's services offer valuable support for teen health and wellbeing, making it a worthwhile investment for families with adolescents. Embrace these resources and take charge of your teen's health journey during this crucial stage of their lives.