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Important For Teen Males To Shower Once A Day?

Published: May 14, 2012
Dear TeenHealthFX,
I'm a 17 year old male is it important to shower at least once a day?
Signed: Important For Teen Males To Shower Once A Day?

Dear Important For Teen Males To Shower Once A Day?,

 

Generally it is recommended that teen males (and females) shower daily. For one thing, being clean is important in terms of social relationships. No person is an island – we interact with other people every day. So it is a good idea to present ourselves as clean and particularly important not to smell bad when interacting with others. Second, being clean allows us to stay sanitary. No person will ever be 100% germ free, but it is important to keep clean so that we are as free as possible of germs that can be harmful. For example, keeping the groin area clean and dry can help to prevent things like jock itch.

Why does showering daily and the focus on personal hygiene become so important during adolescence? Well, there are two main reasons:

·         The first has to do with puberty. During puberty many males notice changes with body odor – either smelling differently or just smelling a little more. Sweat glands become more active during puberty and also begin to secrete different chemicals into the sweat that has a stronger smell. So armpits, feet and the genitals may have new and/or stronger smells. Acne can also increase during puberty – not just on the face, but on the body, too. In addition to your skin becoming more oily, the scalp can become more oily as well causing your hair to look shiny or greasy. So puberty is definitely a time when showering regularly becomes an important thing.

·         The second reason is that teens tend to be very active – playing sports, being out with friends. And as mentioned above, the increased activity of sweat glands during puberty often means that you will be sweatier when active than you were when you were younger.  

 

In general, good teen hygiene involves the following:

·         Showering daily. Take a bath or shower every day using mild soap and warm water. One exception to this is if you have very dry skin, it might be advised for you to shower every other day as too much bathing can strip the skin’s natural protective oils. If you have any questions about what is best for your skin type, speak to your primary care physician, adolescent medicine specialist, or dermatologist.

·         Showering after being physical active. If you come home from sports practice, a sports game, playing touch football in the park with your friends, the gym or whatever else, it is a good idea to shower right away.

·         Washing hair every day or every other day.

·         Using deodorant or antiperspirant. You can speak to a doctor or your pharmacist about what type and brand might be best for you. If you shower every day and do not seem to need deodorant, check in with your doctor about how necessary it is for you.

·         Brush your teeth 2x a day and floss daily.

·         Wear clean socks and underwear every day.  

 

If you have any other questions or concerns about general personal hygiene, as well as what would be best for you, speak to your primary care physician or an adolescent medicine specialist. If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-6475 for an appointment with an adolescent medicine specialist or contact your local teen health center. You can also contact your insurance company for a list of in-network providers.

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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