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A Bathing Checklist for Teenagers

by Susan Revermann

Because puberty changes a teen’s body and physical needs, your teenager can’t stick with the same bathing ritual as she did during childhood and adolescence. All of a sudden, body odor, more hair and zits have to be dealt with. Following a daily bathing checklist will help your teen keep her on task and prevent her from forgetting important cleansing rituals.

Hair

During puberty, teenage hair tends to be oilier than it did during childhood. Washing hair regularly can help cut down on problem. According to the KidsHealth website, your teen should use a mild shampoo daily if he tends to have oily hair. It also recommends washing dry or curly hair less frequently with a shampoo designed for dry hair. If your teen has dandruff, use an over-the-counter medicated shampoo and use it as frequently as the product suggests. A quarter-sized amount on the palm is all that's needed. Because hair is more fragile when it’s wet, use fingertips to gently massage the shampoo into the scalp and hair, instead of rough scrubbing or scratching. Rinse the hair thoroughly with warm water and, right before turning off the water, rinse hair with cold water to seal the cuticle and shaft.

Face

Your teen can put her best face forward with a daily cleansing regimen. According to KidsHealth, zits during the teen years are caused by hormone fluctuations and the pores becoming clogged with dirt, bacteria and an overabundance of sebum. To help keep your teen's face looking its finest, have her wash her face in the morning and evening. When your teen bathes, she can check that off the list by washing her face in the shower. Once she hops in, she should wet her face with warm water and allow it to open pores for a few minutes. A mild acne cleanser can be used, and should be gently massaged into the face in small circles. Don’t scrub -- that can make her problem worse.

Body

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people sweat more during puberty. With this sweat comes body odor. The CDC suggests taking a shower once a day. After your teen's face and hair are clean, she should start from the top of her body and work her way down. She should pay particular attention to her armpits, feet, between the toes and genital area. Because puberty has brought new facial and body hair, if your teen's grooming habits include shaving, during or after a shower is the time to address this issue.

After Bathing

Your teen should pat her face, hair and body dry with a clean towel after bathing, instead of vigorously rubbing those areas. Finger- and toenails should be trimmed regularly. Have your teen apply a light, nonclogging moisturizer for her face to keep it from drying out. A deodorant or antiperspirant will also help with the sweat and body odor after bathing. Also, your teen should floss daily, brush at least twice a day and use anticavity mouthwash.

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