Body Odor and Menopause FAQs

Updated: Jun 18, 2020

Body Odor and Menopause FAQs

Body odor affects a great proportion of women, and can do so from puberty onwards. There are different times of life that you might become particularly affected by body odor, and the menopausal period is one of these. Among the number of changes and symptoms your body will experience during menopause, the possibility of body odor is unfortunately one of these. Find out more about why this might be, and what you can do about it.

Can Menopause Cause Body Odor?

Menopause often indirectly causes body odor, as a result of the other common symptoms associated with this time of life. Specifically, the fluctuations of hormones estrogen and progesterone impact on the body's internal temperature and therefore sweating. During menopause, these hormonal interactions can cause well-known symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats, and the sweating that occurs with these can lead to body odor. This is because body odor is a result of the presence of bacteria that thrives in sweat, and causes an unpleasant scent.

Does Every Woman Experience Body Odor with Menopause?

While most women find that they encounter hot flashes, and frequently become over-heated in general during their menopausal years, this might not result in body odor for all of us. Some women are more prone to body odor than others, and it will also depend on personal hygiene habits such as the frequency with which you shower, wash your clothes, and shave armpit hair.

How Can Menopausal Body Odor Be Treated?

If your body odor problem begins with menopause, it can sometimes be treated by addressing the root problem of menopausal sweating. Night sweats and hot flashes can be reduced by the administration of hormone-influencing medication such as Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), or natural supplements such as soy and black cohosh. HRT in particular is not without side effects, it is important to discuss this option with your doctor before embarking on treatment.

What Else Can Be Done about Body Odor?

In addition to considering a hormone treatment, there are many other ways that body odor can be alleviated or possibly ended altogether. The following are just a few methods that women have found to be successful:

  • Take a bath or shower at least once a day to wash away the sweat and bacteria.
  • Use an antibacterial soap to wash affected areas such as armpits and groin.
  • Shave your armpits frequently.
  • Wear light clothes made with natural material like cotton and silk.
  • Consume less red meat, spices, onion, and garlic.

For many women menopause and body odor go hand in hand, but understanding the reasons behind this can go a long way regarding how to tackle the problem. Addressing the primary cause of fluctuating internal temperature is vastly helpful to avoid body odor.