Why Does Poop Smell Linger on Skin?

It’s no secret that poop smells and is one of the most unpleasant odors to have around. Most people probably aren’t too worried about their poop’s smell after they flush it away. However, it becomes a problem when the scent lingers on their skin, especially at work or out with friends and family. So, why does poop smell linger on skin even hours after visiting the washrooms?

Many factors come into play for a poop smell to be awkwardly strong to the extent of not fading away immediately. We will examine why poop might smell like death at times. We will also learn how to get it off the skin and if it also sticks on clothes.

Why Does My Poop Smell like Death?

Usually, poop smell isn’t exciting, but there are those times that the smell would be so bad that you would only liken it to death. And while not everyone has this experience, they’re not uncommon. Lots of factors can be attributed to a terrible poop smell, both medical and non-medical.

They include:

Sulfur-rich Diet: When you eat a lot of foods high in sulfur, such as cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cabbage, you will likely end up with smelly poop. This is because sulfur-rich food gets converted into hydrogen sulfide gas by bacteria in your gut. Not everyone will have the same results from eating these types of food, some people may have tiny changes to their stool odor, and others may have an increase in odor intensity.

Medication: Certain types of medication also influence how the poop odor remains on the skin. For example, drugs like antibiotics can increase sulfur gas production. Drug reactions can also result in different smells depending on how many pills or capsules are taken daily. If someone takes antibiotics for five days, their stools will have a different odor than if they took them for 10 days.

Infections: A person can also have a smell like poop disease. Parasites and certain bacterial infections also change stool odor, consistency, and frequency. Intestinal cancer patients often notice that their bowel movements start to stink after being diagnosed. Other intestinal conditions like ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease can cause chronic diarrhea, which usually means more powerful smelling poop that lingers on the skin.

High alcohol consumption: It’s important to note that alcohol can temporarily mask foul-smelling poops but can also lead to constipation and other digestive problems that might give rise to more intense odors.

Why Does Poop Smell Linger On Skin?

When poop smell lingers on the skin, it is most likely because of a number of reasons that include:

Stronger than Usual Poop Smell

If your poop smells more potent than usual, it might stay on your skin longer than expected. It takes time for these odors to disappear, and a strong one will persist for some time. A number of reasons, including those already discussed, contribute to one having bad-smelling poop.

Poor Cleaning/Wiping after Visiting the Washrooms

One reason the poop smell lingers on the skin is poor wiping with a tissue paper or cleaning after visiting the washroom. Not thoroughly cleaning off all fecal matter can lead to more odor being trapped in the anal region. And this make it linger on the skin more than usual.

The Type of Poop

Different poop types (e.g, stool, diarrhea) have different smells and textures, which could be another reason why poop smell may linger on the skin. Mostly, diarrhea takes a shorter time to clean up than regular bowel movements. Though diarrhea will stick around for a while, it’s not as intense as regular bowel movements.

Longer Breakdown of Hydrogen Sulfide Gas

Hydrogen sulfide gas is the component that usually makes poop smell terrible. For the smell to disappear, hydrogen sulfide gas needs to be broken down by environmental chemicals, which happens over time.

How to Get Rid of Poop Smell On Skin

The best way to get rid of the poop smell is to take a shower. Showering removes all the stink, fecal particles, and bacteria on your skin. Ensure you use plenty of soap and water when showering.

Also, be sure to clean your hands thoroughly with soap as well so that you do not transfer any bacteria from your hands onto other parts of your body like the mouth or eyes.

Lastly, change your clothes if you suspect that they may have been soiled with poop. This prevents you from transferring the fecal properties to your skin.

Does Poop Smell Stick to Clothes?

Yes, poop smell will stick to clothes. It is a combination of several factors, although the main reason is that the odors get trapped in clothing fibers because they are not very porous. If the fabric is made of materials like cotton or wool, it may be possible for odor molecules to bind themselves permanently onto the fabric’s surface. Synthetic fabrics like polyester and nylon may be more likely to allow odor molecules to evaporate quickly and escape.

How Long Does Poop Smell Last on Clothes?

Poop smell can last on clothes depending on how long the fabric fibers can hold onto the particles that cause the odor. The degree to which the clothes absorb the smell also plays a role in determining how long poop smells will linger.

For example, fabrics with a tight weave and dense construction will retain odors for longer periods than lighter-weight and loosely woven fabrics. In addition, materials such as cotton, linen, wool, silk, or polyester are easier to clean than acrylics or nylon. This is because they are porous and allow liquids to penetrate into their depths more easily.

Why Does Poop Smell Linger in Bathroom?

There are times when you will flush the toilet, but hours later, there’s still a poop smell lingering around. Reasons for this include:

Lack of Ventilation

As you may already know, each time you flush the toilet after number two, microscopic poop particles stream into the air. If your bathroom doesn’t have proper ventilation, those particles will linger around, causing your bathroom to have a foul smell.

The solution is to open a window and/or turn on the fan to let fresh air into the bathroom.

Drain Clogs

A block in the drain will prevent water from flowing easily through the pipes. Often, this water gets stuck alongside other solids like soap scum and hair. Once these materials begin to decompose, they produce a poop-like smell.

To deal with drain clogs, pour hot water down your drain, followed by a blend of vinegar and baking soda (one cup each). Let it rest for ten minutes before flushing down hot water again.

Low Water Pressure

One single flush should be enough to wash down all the contents of your toilet. But this will not be possible if your toilet has very low water pressure. This means your toilet bowl may remain with some little poop scraps or skid marks that cause a poop-like smell even after you flush.

In this case, you will need to talk to a plumber to help boost your flush power.

Why Does Some People’s Poop Smell Worse than Others

There are a few reasons why some people’s poop smells worse than others.

Differences in diet: People’s foods can impact the smell of their poop. Some foods, like onions, garlic, asparagus, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts, and other vegetables can cause the person to have smelly bowel movements.

Allergies: People have different digestive systems, so what may not be very noticeable for one person might be very strong for another. For example, someone lactose intolerant might have gas or bloat after eating dairy products. On the other hand, someone else may not react to those same products.

Medications: Certain medications can also change how one’s feces smell. If someone has just had antibiotics, their stool may be slightly stinky.

Final Thoughts on Why Does Poop Smell Linger on Skin

The extra smell of poop can be a sign of a medical problem. It can also be a result of what you have eaten. While some people have just naturally smelly poop, others may need to look for the underlying cause. If you’re worried about the odor of your stool, talk to your doctor about it.

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