People of all races have a unique body odor (BO), which can be pleasant or subtle, but when we think of body odor, we usually think of an unpleasant smell. Changes to body odor may be due to puberty, excessive sweating, or poor hygiene. Sudden changes are typically caused by the environment, medications, or foods that you eat.
However, body odor, especially sudden and persistent changes to your normal odor like those emanating from your underwear, can sometimes be a sign of an underlying condition or something you should quickly take care of.
I Can Smell Myself Through My Pants
There are many reasons why men and women can smell themselves through their pants, these include:
- Your period: It’s not uncommon to notice a strong scent when you’re menstruating. Since blood has a higher pH level, your vaginal flora can get thrown off a little during your period and you may notice a metallic smell. This type of smell should resolve once menstruation ends though.
- Poor hygiene: Refraining from regular bathing can lead to dirt, sweat, and dead skin cell buildup that leads to strong smells through your clothes. You can reduce these effects by showering regularly and washing with mild soap and warm water.
- Diet: Experts say that what you eat and drink can affect the way your pant smells. That’s why he usually tells women to pay attention to what affects their odor at any given time. If you find that your normal scent is off and you’ve been eating more processed foods, try increasing your intake of fruit and vegetables and see if that makes a difference. Foods that may cause strong body smells include asparagus, garlic, onion, chili, vinegar, marinated fish, and fermented milk products.
- Medications: Some medications may increase the body’s likelihood to sweat, which may increase the smells in the groin area. Sometimes, medications can cause your pant to smell like sulfur due to urine drops. Two common examples are vitamin B supplements and sulfa drugs. Sulfa drugs treat a wide number of conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis.
- Sex: Every time someone has sex, bodily fluids (sweat) are released and it leaves behind a distinct smell. That’s why penetrative vaginal or anal intercourse smells like sweaty armpits. It’s not uncommon to notice that your groin smells a little unusual after sexual activity.
- Sexually transmitted infections (STIs): Infections such as trichomonas, which is a sexually transmitted infection (STI), can cause the “I can smell myself through my pants” syndrome. This infection usually produces a fishy smell. Your doctor or healthcare provider can examine you and get a laboratory test to diagnose trichomonas. The preferred method of treatment is antibiotics. It is important that both you and your partner get treated.
- Yeast infection: An overgrowth of yeast in the vagina can produce a sweet smell, similar to that of honey or cookies. The vagina might also smell like beer, flour, or bread. It can also smell sour sometimes. Intense burning, itching, or feelings of dryness usually accompany yeast infections.
- Cervical cancer: This type of cancer can sometimes be the reason why you can smell yourself through your pant. If cervical cancer lacks oxygen, some cells may die off, infecting the tumor. The infection is what creates a foul-smelling vaginal discharge. If the discharge is continuous and appears to be pale, watery, brown, or mixed with blood, you should contact your doctor. With cervical cancer, you may notice a discharge that is foul-smelling and pink, brown, or bloody in color. Sometimes, the discharge may include chunks of tissue or necrotic material as a result of infection of the tumors, creating a foul-smelling vaginal discharge.