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What causes bad body odor?

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Posted on Mon, 25 Jul 2016
Question: People say that I smell like poop all the time and they also sniffe a lot and couch and sneeze. It's like they are elerjerct to me. this doesn't make sense because I take two showers a day and put expensive cologne on
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Some questions to help guide my answer.

Detailed Answer:
Hello XXXXXXX

I'm sorry - this sounds like a difficult problem for you. I have a few questions to ask you that can help me sort this out:

1. How long has this been going on?
2. Do you have pets?
3. How often do you see the dentist, and have you had any dental problems?
4. Do you have sinus congestion or post nasal drainage?
5. Do you have any burning or bitter taste in your mouth, or acid reflux?
6. When you pass gas, does it smell especially bad?
7. Do you have bowel movements daily (regularly)?
8. Do you have any health problems?

Information to follow after I hear back.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (40 minutes later)
This has been going on for a year and a half. I have a dog. I go to the dentist every 6months. I did and I don't know if I still do have sinus congestions

Yes it kind of smells bad when I pass gas

I do have bowel moments daily

I don't have any health problems
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (25 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Some thoughts.

Detailed Answer:
Ok - let's see if we can sort this out a bit.

Sometimes a bad poop type smell can come from dental problems (poor dental hygiene, cavities). Problems with the digestive tract can also produce smells from the mouth (such as from acid reflux), or foul smelling gas (from malabsorption).

Sinus problems that cause post nasal drainage (such as from allergies) can cause very bad breath but the rest of the body wouldn't smell bad.

Sometimes sweat can smell foul - it usually doesn't smell like poop though.

So here are some thoughts:
I'm going to speculate that the allergic symptoms some people show when they are around you may be from dog dander that may be on you and not related to the possible smell.

But I think it would be a good idea for you to go in for a physical to have this evaluated in person. Don't wear cologne when you go in to see the doctor, and if possible, wear clothes that are neither recently washed nor have any cologne on it. So in other words, they should smell like you from wearing them.

Ask the doctor to check your throat as signs of post nasal drainage can be seen, and if that is the problem, the doctor may recommend a steroid nasal spray and other medications to help clear up any throat drainage.

The doctor should also check your armpits for any sweat gland infections.

If the smell is coming from the behind, the doctor should check there too as some people have a recurrent smell from there inspite of good hygiene..

A blood test called a chemistry panel can help see if there are any abnormalities there, such as abnormal levels of certain metabolic products.

When you or your folks make an appointment for you, make sure it is with a physician and not a physician's assistant or nurse practitioner, as this requires deeper knowledge than they have to sort out.

So that is what I suggest doing next.

I welcome you letting me know how you are doing after you go in to be seen. And good luck.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (17 minutes later)
I'm kind of embarrassed to go to the doctor. What can I do at home so it goes away before school starts
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (3 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
do you have a yearly physical?

Detailed Answer:
Yes, I can understand being embarrassed - I have a 17 year old kid at home. But we don't know what is causing the problem so it is hard to know what to do to make the problem go away. Do you usually go in for a yearly well child check up before school starts?
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (31 minutes later)
Idk sometimes
doctor
Answered by Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh (20 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Ask you parent(s) to schedule a well child check for you.

Detailed Answer:
Usually children 18 and under should have a yearly physical called a well child check. The doctor checks your height, weight, and general health with a history and physical. You could bring this up at a return to school well child check.

I can understand being embarrassed, but believe me, after many years of med school and residency we become pretty immune to seeing just about anything. So it really wouldn't be something to make a doctor think poorly of you. And it's nothing to be ashamed of.

At your age, after the nurse does some initial history taking before the doctor comes in, it would be perfectly acceptable to ask your parent to leave so that it is just you and the doctor (and make sure you are scheduled with a doctor, and not a nurse practitioner for your actual visit). And then tell the doctor your concerns when he comes in.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Bonnie Berger-Durnbaugh

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1991

Answered : 3134 Questions

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What causes bad body odor?

Brief Answer: Some questions to help guide my answer. Detailed Answer: Hello XXXXXXX I'm sorry - this sounds like a difficult problem for you. I have a few questions to ask you that can help me sort this out: 1. How long has this been going on? 2. Do you have pets? 3. How often do you see the dentist, and have you had any dental problems? 4. Do you have sinus congestion or post nasal drainage? 5. Do you have any burning or bitter taste in your mouth, or acid reflux? 6. When you pass gas, does it smell especially bad? 7. Do you have bowel movements daily (regularly)? 8. Do you have any health problems? Information to follow after I hear back.