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Are Deodorants & Antiperspirants safe for teens?
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kjml2004 posted:
My 13 yr old needs to start using a Deodorant/Antiperspirant but I have heard people talk about them being unsafe for kids/teens and shouldn't be used. Should they only use a Deodorant without an Antiperspirant? While several people have said there is a possible cancer risk I am not sold on that theory.

Thanks!
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Susan Evans, MD responded:
Dear kjml2004,

There is still a lot of research that needs to be done to determine conclusively if there is a link between the use of deodorants, antiperspirants and cancer.

In the meantime, when you child enters puberty, you begin to notice that they are developing increasing body odor. The first line of defense, obviously, is bathing and washing well under the arms.

If this provides only short-term benefits, you may wish to just start with a deodorant for your child. A deodorant helps to minimize the smell. Antiperspirants help to limit how much you sweat underneath your arms. Limiting how moist the armpit area is helps to minimize the odor because odor causing bacteria thrive in dark, warm, and moist environments.

I hope this helps answer your questions.

Best,

Dr. Evans