When your body temperature rises above 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, your sweat glands are activated to cool the body through evaporation. Unfortunately, as effective as this process is in maintaining a healthy core temperature, it can lead to unpleasant underarm wetness and also odor if bacteria is present. While perspiration in the body can't be stopped completely, for risk of overheating, you can take steps to combat the effects of underarm wetness on your social life and clothing.
Wear natural fabric tops made of natural fibers such as cotton or linen, which have plenty of ventilation. Sleeveless tops will allow the sweat beneath your arms to evaporate quickly. Avoid garments made of poly blends, which keep heat and moisture trapped against your body.
Use an antiperspirant. Antiperspirants contain aluminum, which reacts with the pH in sweat and exudes a metallic salt that covers sweat glands, preventing sweat from reaching the surface of the skin. Be aware of the difference between antiperspirants and deodorants. The latter kills the bacteria that cause odor but does not prevent your body from sweating.
Protect your clothing and keep your underarms dry with clothing shields. These absorbent pads attach to the interior underarms of your shirt or dress, preventing sweat stains on the fabric and soaking up excess moisture on your skin. Remove the sticky backing and press the shield to the arm hole inside of your top. Replace when a shield becomes damp.
Dust talcum or baby powder liberally under your arms. The powder will absorb excess sweat. Reapply as necessary to keep your skin dry.
- Stay well hydrated by drinking water to keep your temperature down and prevent your body's need to sweat.
- Keep your underarms free of hair so air can circulate more freely around the area.
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