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Can body odor be caused by PCOS & IR?
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Can body odor be caused by PCOS & IR?

Hi All,

Sorry for this "TMI" post but I have this embarrassing problem and I've tried to ask some doctors online about it but never got an answer. I don't know how to bring this up to my endo or GYN. I was diagnosed with insulin resistance and PCOS last year. My main issue is that I take a shower 2-3 times a day yet I have body odor. I know sometimes I have bad breath even after brushing my teeth, using a tongue cleaner and/or mouthwash. My feet smell even though I am aware of it and therefore clean it thoroughly and have clean shoes. I change my underwear multiple times a day and it is "wet" after just an hour or two. I've changed my soap and body wash so many times to try to eliminate this. The smell is still the same even if I use a feminine wash, perfume or anything. I've tried everything. My MIL has told me that my armpits smell, it was such a shameful situation. I use a deodorant and even baby powder there. I think I sweat more than most people do. I know this is not too lady-like and I cry a lot about it. Maybe the high testosterone level is the reason for this? It might be because of my weight (I'm approx. 200 lbs) but I know there are many people who are far from being slender but they don't smell bad. I don't smoke, I don't drink, I try to eat as clean as possible (no onions either). This is just so embarrassing that it makes me not want to go anywhere because I can't even spend a whole day at work without feeling stinky and nasty, and the weird thing is that I seem to be the only one out there with this problem because others don't smell bad around me. I would hug people and have conversations with so much more ease if I didn't have to worry about this. I really don't think my hygiene is bad, I am so aware of this problem but does this have something to do with IR, PCOS or high testosterone? I wish there was a solution for this! I was wondering if it is a good idea to somehow detoxify my body? Thank you for reading my post.
Tags: body odor, PCOS, IR
5 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm so sorry to read you are suffering with this.

I'm not a doctor, so I can't tell you if PCOS and/or IR can cause this.  I can tell you that I have PCOS-related IR, and I do not have this problem.  So, in my own case, I can only show they don't cause it in everyone.

Best of luck to you.  I hope you find a way to solve this problem or, if not solve, adequately manage it.  :)
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Avatar_f_tn
I so knw what you are talking about... I have been experiencing the same problem... I would bathe 2-3 times a day... And I would sweat so much that it was like I never put any deodarant on or even took a bath... I finally found a deodarant that would hold for me... And I had to wear a panty liners and I use replenish which helps the odor for at least a week... I can only wear cotton underwear... I also got some body spray... Not the loud smelling one but just a soft sent... And fine a perfume that works with ur body... For me it is perry Ellis 360... It's soft and it last long... The sent lingers... Then find a soap that works for u as well a strong sent... I use lever 2000... Hope this helps
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Avatar_f_tn
I have PCOS and  also have the same problem, especially the sweating. I ruined so many shirts with armpit stains, so I started dressing in layers. I also have to rotate deodorant brands because they stop working after a while. I also wear panty liners along with a feminine powder to help absorb moisture. I can't wear perfume, I have to layer the scent (body wash, body spray, then lotion) because my body turns the perfume into a stench.  Yep and lever 2000 and Safeguard antibacterial soap work really well for me. My body also does okay with  Victoria Secret's garden fragrance line
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Avatar_f_tn
hello, i have pcos and also have experienced a body odor problem, too.  i didn't receive my first period until i was about 15 and by 16 my periods were months apart.  my natural scent also changed and i was made fun of a lot in school for it.  i did visit my gyno in my late teens when i finally had enough of it and she tested for yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, etc., all of which came back negative.  her suggestion was to try to manage it by using antibacterial soaps (i use dial bodywash) and strong deodorants.  i don't really use a lot of perfumes because they usually smell bad by the end of the day on my skin but i found several from L'Occitane (a french perfumery) that are light and airy and smell great even after a long day at work.  the main thing is not to try to cover up your body odor with a strong scent (heavy perfumes end up stinking worse!) but to let your skin breathe as much as possible and keep bacteria from growing in sweaty places (like armptis, crotch, feet, etc.).
i have recently begun looking into visiting with a reproductive endocrinologist as many of the issues with pcos are due to hormones being out of whack.  i am now 32 and discerning marriage with my boyfriend and we talk about having kids someday.  i'm not sure if this is possible with pcos (my periods stopped mid-way through my 20's) but i was told that an endocrinologist may be able to offer some insight on what's going on inside my body.  i have acne, very oily hair, really oily face, dark patches of skin around my neck and many other symptoms of pcos in addition to the body odor. i thought these were all just things i had to live with but apparently endocrinology may be able to help with getting some of these issues fixed or at least managed better!  there is hope, hang in there... message me directly if you would like to talk further.
peace and blessings!
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Avatar_f_tn
I also have PCOS, and have been told by two GYNs and an endocrinologist (I'm now looking for another endocrinologist) that nothing can be done about the odor.  I should just learn to appreciate and live with my "natural" aroma.  But it's so embarrassing.  It causes stress which adds to the severity of problems I have with other medical diagnosis.  The PCOS contributes to the problem of the odor and also excessive hair growth for me.  When I was younger my GYN at least told me that a hysterectomy could help with the hair growth problem,  but because I was younger of course she wouldn't consider that.  I'm about to explore that option again with my current GYN now that I am old.  I am 44 now.  Of course, since hysterectomy was not an option my doctor at the time would explore she prescribed birth control pills to regulate the hormones.  They don't help at all.  As for the odor it just keeps getting worse.  I've tried every deodorant on the market, women's and men's.  I've even tried clinical deodorants.  I find the one that helps the best is the men's version of the classic deodorant Mitchum.  Notice I said works the best, it's still not satisfactory.  I also take more than one shower a day.  I have tried many different soaps.  I use a feminine body wash.  I use special shampoos for my head and hair. I use baking soda, peroxide, and witch hazel to combat bacterias.  I have tried essential oils.  I use foot sprays and odor eaters in my shoes.  I wash my bed sheets very often.  I have tried different laundry detergents for my clothes; and I even also add baking soda to the wash.  During the day when I'm working I use dry shampoos in my hair, light scented perfumes, antibacterial wipes, feminine wipes.  And still the bad odor persists.  On top of dealing with that I was diagnosed with chronic regional pain syndrome (CRPS) back in 2002.  The medication I have to take to manage the pain so that I can continue to work has side effects that cause perspiration.  Just what I needed.  Like I didn't have enough of a problem with that.  I try to eat healthy and limit caffeine.  I don't smoke or drink either.  I was a bit heavier for a while but never over 180 lbs., and I've been exercising and losing weight since 2011 so now I'm not even over 150 lbs.  Other people, even doctors, say it's embarrassing to them.  They have no idea how embarrassing it can be.  I'm (we're) the one's who have to live with and deal with it daily.  Plus we have to deal with the embarrassing stares and comments too.  Even though I've tried light scented perfumes in the past, I really do try to stay away from that now.  It really only masks the problem and makes it worse.  I'm anxious to find a second endocrinologist and see if something is being overloooked.  Also, if by chance my GYN agrees to do the hysterectomy I will of course let you know if that helps in anyway.  Just know that you are definitely not alone.
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