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Armpit Hair and Odor: How to Avoid Embarrassing Situations

Our underarms can often place us in some uncomfortable predicaments. Today, let us delve into the realm of underarm scent and underarm hair, and explore how we may evade these embarrassing circumstances.

Why is it not possible to eliminate underarm hair in one fell swoop?

The primary approach to managing underarm hair is hair removal. Cryotherapy hair removal is a prevalent and widely employed technique in clinical practice. This treatment modality employs the discerning photothermal impact on hair follicles to dismantle the dermal tissue responsible for hair follicle production. Its effect is selective in nature, signifying that the photothermal effect abstains from annihilating the sweat glands and other cutaneous tissues, instead solely targeting the hair follicle tissue. Furthermore, during the treatment process, this method’s cooling and icing effect assuages discomfort and enhances the patient’s overall well-being.

Many enthusiasts of beauty often pose this inquiry: Can all underarm hair be eradicated in a single session? The answer is negative. The growth of our hair transpires in three distinct phases: the growth phase, regression phase, and resting phase. These periods form a cyclic process, implying that certain hairs are in the growth phase, some in the regression phase, and others in the resting phase. Our laser can only dismantle hair follicles in the growth phase. In other words, a patient’s laser treatment solely eradicates the hair currently in the growth phase. Other hair follicles in the regression and resting phases will regenerate hair once they transition into the growth phase. Consequently, to comprehensively eliminate underarm hair, patients typically necessitate three treatments, and in some cases, even five treatments to achieve the desired outcome of hair removal.

Several considerations must be taken into account regarding cryotherapy hair removal. Firstly, patients must diligently ascertain whether any infections, inflammations, or traumas affect the skin of both underarms prior to treatment, while also avoiding excessive sun exposure. If a patient sustains a skin injury or has recently been exposed to sunlight, it is advisable to postpone the treatment until the skin has fully recuperated before proceeding with laser hair removal.

Additionally, before the hair removal procedure, patients must meticulously shave the hair in their underarms. Following treatment, they should refrain from sun exposure and ensure adequate moisturization of the underarm skin. These practices expedite the skin’s recovery. Some patients opt to undergo hair removal treatment during autumn and winter, thus affording the skin ample time to rejuvenate and circumventing the embarrassment associated with their underarms once spring and summer arrive, enabling them to don lightweight attire without reservation.

Three remedies for underarm odor

The unpleasant and disagreeable scent emanating from the underarms is commonly referred to as body odor among the general populace, although we designate it as underarm odor in the realm of medicine.

Underarm odor is the malodorous sweat originating from the underarms. So, from whence does this scent arise? It primarily stems from the fact that the sweat secreted by our apocrine glands in the underarms undergoes bacterial catabolism on the skin surface, resulting in an odor formed by unsaturated fatty acids. This aroma becomes particularly pronounced in hot weather or during periods of excessive perspiration. Especially in summer, when individuals don lighter clothing, engage in heightened physical activity, and lack measures to mask odors, this embarrassing predicament frequently arises. In severe cases, patients may emit this scent even in autumn and winter, despite wearing thicker clothing.

Underarm odor not only impairs normal interpersonal communication but also burdens patients with significant psychological distress. So, can underarm odor be remedied? How can it be treated?

Below, I shall introduce three commonly employed clinical approaches for addressing underarm odor.

The first method entails injection treatment. This non-surgical modality involves the administration of medicinal liquid into predetermined points and depths within the patient’s underarm. The medication inhibits the secretion of apocrine glands in the underarm, thereby diminishing underarm odor. Since the body absorbs and metabolizes the drug every 4 to 6 months, patients must undergo periodic injections within this timeframe.

The second method is minimally invasive suction and scraping. This constitutes a surgical form of treatment. The physician inserts a specialized clinical suction and scraping instrument through a small incision of approximately 1 cm to eradicate the apocrine sweat glands in the underarm, consequently reducing sweat gland secretion and inhibiting odor generation.

The ingenuity of this treatment approach lies in the strategic placement of the surgical incision within the axillary fold, rendering it inconspicuous and arduous to discern once the patient has fully recovered.

The third method is small incision suction incision. The length of the incision spans between 3 to 5 cm, surpassing the incision length of minimally invasive suction and scraping. The incision’s extent primarily hinges upon the distribution area of sweat glands in the underarm. Should the patient exhibit a larger distribution of sweat glands in the underarm, the incision will proportionately lengthen; conversely, if the patientexhibits a smaller distribution, the incision will be smaller. The advantage of this surgical technique lies in its ability to enable doctors to precisely locate the sweat glands in the underarms through direct visualization, facilitating thorough removal and yielding clearer treatment outcomes.

The decision of which treatment method to pursue ultimately rests with the patient, who may choose based on their individual needs. If a patient is unable to undergo any form of surgery, injections undoubtedly represent the optimal choice. Patients only need injections approximately every 6 months. If the patient can tolerate a minor surgical incision, the minimally invasive suction and scraping method is more suitable. For patients experiencing particularly strong underarm odor, a small incision suction incision is recommended. This surgical procedure enables comprehensive destruction of the sweat gland tissue in the underarms, thereby achieving a more effective odor elimination outcome.