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At what age do children generally get underarm odor?

The other day, I smelled somethin just downright "funky". I checked my underarms it wasn't me, I checked the kids in my day care until I came to this one child who is only 4 years old. She literally smelled worse than a grown man coming home from a constuction site. I took her to the bathroom and freshened her up with a bar of soap, and let her change her shirt. When her mom came, I just told her she got a little too hot today. I didn't want to say she needed deordorant. Can a 4 year old get under arm funk that early?

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Asked by Anonymous at 5:02 PM on Oct. 26, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Answers (9)
  • i recently was talking to my mother and she was telling me about how the neighbors daughter started having underarm odor problems, she was only five...they took her to the doc cause they thought it was odd and found out she had a hormonal imbalance...i dont know if this was just a strange case and its not odd for children to have stinky underarms....i know my 6yo doesnt...but keep your eye on it for a while and if it continues maybe say something to the parent.

    Answer by blueeyedgrl2377 at 5:06 PM on Oct. 26, 2009

  • I was gonna ask this same question for my 8 year old its not that bad, but I didn't start wearing deoderant til I was 12.

    Answer by Fordmomma at 5:07 PM on Oct. 26, 2009

  • If the child isn't being bathed frequently enough, yes. On a day to day basis it generally doesn't become an issue until the tween years and hormones kick in. My grand daughter is almost 7 though and I have been using deoderant with her for about three months now. She tends to sweat profusely at school and comes home funky if I don't. Her Pediatrician told us she was seeing more and more of this along with earlier onset of menses.

    Answer by GrnEyedGrandma at 5:08 PM on Oct. 26, 2009

  • OH YEAH THEY CAN!! my dd is only 3 and when she plays hard enough outside. she starts to smell like her daddys feet lol. i started putting deoderant on her about 3 months ago..

    Answer by texas_robin82 at 5:14 PM on Oct. 26, 2009

  • Children sweat just like we sweat so yes, they can get underarm odor. My son doesn't have stinky underarms but his feet are horrid if he sweats.

    Answer by KalebsMommee at 6:38 PM on Oct. 26, 2009

  • I student teach in a classroom with 5-7 year olds and on any given day one of them needs deodorant. Everyone sweats, and most people smell when they do. If the girl your talking about is having an issue everyday and its noticeable to many other people I'd say something to her mom, especially since its not fair to this girl to be the smelly kid in class, even if they're little. However if its just once in awhile on a warmer day then i'd just freshen her up with a clean shirt or use a wipe to remove the sweat.

    Answer by ba13ygrl1987 at 9:26 PM on Oct. 26, 2009

  • If a child that young is having underarm odor, I agree with the poster that said that you should mention it to a doctor. I know that I didn't start to wear deodorant until I was 12 or 13. I do not bekieve that it is normal. (Stinky feet are another issue, as that is related to bacteria growth in the shoes with sweat.)

    Answer by evwsquared at 5:31 AM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • I agree with evwsquared. I would consult your doctor...that's a bit early for hormones to be kicking in. Everyone sweats but not everyone smells. Bathing regularly is an obvious solution that doesn't require chemicals. Even if you just wash the pits every day.

    Answer by char944 at 7:41 AM on Oct. 27, 2009

  • My 2nd son started smelling around 5-6 yrs. It was horrible!! Even with a nightly bath and washing his arm pits a few times a day! I mentioned it to his Dr. who informed me that children are starting earlier and earlier and to use deodorant if it got to bad. I bought organic deodorant (not wanting to put all those chemicals on my sons skin so close to glands and everything else). It doesn't work. At now 8 yrs old he wares the same as his dad. I just can't find anything to cover the stink!! Looking back on it now, I really wish I'd have gotten a second opinion. That really could possibly explain other issues too.


    Answer by my4littlemen at 9:23 AM on Oct. 27, 2009

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