Your preteen’s body is changing. Her personal care routine may need to change, too.

Tweens may be confused when their body starts to act differently during puberty. They may sweat a lot or have body hair in new places. Parents have an important role to play in helping tweens adjust their self-care practices.

Here’s how to help your tween handle some common hygiene concerns:

  • Be patient and sensitive. Talking about the changes she’s going through, such as breast development, may be tough for your child. Let her know you’re always available to listen and help when she needs you.
  • Encourage daily bathing. Every-other-day washes may no longer be enough to fight smelly underarms, feet and private parts. Daily showers will help with body odor and hair that may be oilier than it used to be.
  • Help your child pick out personal care items. She may wish to try a deodorant, shampoo and conditioner for oily hair, and facial product for acne. You can help find what works best for her.
  • Keep clothes fresh. Wearing clean clothes every day can help control odor.
  • Lead the way. Your child may be unsure how to approach a new hygiene routine. Put him at ease and provide guidance by, say, shaving together.

Call the St. Louis Children’s Hospital Family Resource Center at 314.454.KIDS (5437) and press “5” to have information on tween hygiene sent to you.

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Expert Advice