Jock Itch, (Tinea Cruris), is a fungal infection which is in the form of a ringworm and likes to reside in warm and moist places on the body. Dermatophytes, another tinea infection that causes jock itch, is a microscopic fungus that lives on the hair, skin and nails.
People who are overweight, and sweat a lot, or who have eczema, a skin infection, are more likely to get it. Because they thrive in warm, moist places, they are usually found in the groin area, inner thigh and buttock.
This fungal infection got the name ‘Jock Itch’ because it is mostly common in athletes but as mentioned earlier, can affect people who are overweight or sweat a lot.
Jock Itch is common in men, especially adolescents. It can cause a rash which is harmless but it spreads quickly which causes an infection that burns or itches. Typically, Jock Itch is a mild infection and can be easily treated and prevented.
What causes a Jock Itch?
Jock Itch is caused by a fungal infection, ringworm (tinea or dermatophytosis), that is tremendously contagious. It thrives in warm, moist and closed environments and can spread from one person to another through shared pieces of clothing.
It can also be found on pieces of equipment like exercise equipment and can be spread through that means as well.
Risk Factors of Jock Itch
- Gender: Women are less likely to develop jock itch than men.
- Weight: People who are overweight have more skin folds, which is the best environment for fungal infections like jock itch to reside.
- Sweating profusely: A person who sweats a lot has a skin that is more suited for the fungus growth.
- Age: Teenagers are more likely to have a jock itch
- Wearing tight underwear and clothing: Tight fabrics irritates the skin as well as traps moisture on the skin which creates the best environment for the growth of fungus.
- Having a weak immune system: People whose immune systems are weakened are more likely to develop fungal infections like jock itch than others.
- Having diabetes: Diabetics are more prone to skin infections which includes jock itch.
Symptoms of Jock Itch
- An area on your skin that is red.
- Itching and burning sensation.
- Scaling, flaking, cracking or peeling of skin.
- Worsens with activity/exercises.
- Spreads instead of improves.
Treatment of Jock Itch
Jock Itch can be easily treated but can last for months without any treatment. Over-the-counter antifungals which can come in forms of ointments, spray, lotion, body wash or powder can be used to treat a Jock Itch.
There are several products that can be used as a jock itch remedy for the treatment of this fungal rash right at the comfort of your home.
- As mentioned earlier, over-the-counter antifungal/antibacterial products like ointments, spray, lotion, body wash or powder can help treat Jock Itch.
- Using Antifungal/Antibacterial soap/body wash to wash the infected part thoroughly with warm water is a good practice for treating Jock Itch. One of the best antifungal and antibacterial body wash for treating Jock Itch is the Mensome Antibacterial and Antifungal Body wash.
- Use a clean towel to dry the infected area thoroughly subsequent to bathing and/or exercising. Also, use a different towel to wipe the rest of your body so the infection doesn’t spread to new areas.
- Change your underwear and clothing everyday.
- Wear loose and breathable clothing like cotton.
- Treat other fungal and bacterial infections you might have.
- Read the antifungal/antibacterial label and use as directed for the period of recommended usage for complete treatment.
If over-the-counter home remedies and/or medications do not work, then you can ask your doctor or a healthcare professional to prescribe you something stronger. Some of the possible options may include:
- Topical medications like oxiconazole (Oxistat) or conazole (Ecoza) and fluconazole (Diflucan) or itraconazole (Sporanox) for oral medication.
- Side effects for the oral antifungal medication may occur like headaches and upset stomach. Contact your doctor to discuss these side effects.
Prevention of Jock Itch
- Stay clean and dry especially after an activity/exercise. Adhere to taking baths after any activity/activities that make you sweat and dry yourself thoroughly to avoid moisture on skin. Use an antifungal or antibacterial bathing soap like the Mensome Antibacterial and Antifungal Bathing Bar for treating jock itch.
- Wear clean clothes and underwear to prevent a jock itch. Change your underwear daily.
- Avoid sharing clothing items with anyone, especially towels.
- Avoid tight fitting clothes to prevent sweat build up and create room for your skin to breathe with loose breathable pieces of clothing like cotton. This allows air to reach your skin to cool it off and dry up any sweat/moisture build up to prevent jock itch.
- Use powder before and/or after exercising to minimise sweat build up.
- Clean training or exercise equipment before using them to avoid getting contaminated as the fungus that causes jock itch can easily survive on hard surfaces.
- Wear footwear in public pools or showers to avoid stepping on infected areas.
Make these prevention your norm to avoid Jock Itch and in case of infection, try out the home remedies and/or contact a healthcare professional.
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Q: Will jock itch go away on its own?
A: Jock Itch needs to be treated and can last for months, maybe longer without any form of treatment.
Q: How did I get a jock itch?
A: There are so many ways you can get Jock Itch. It can be gotten from sweating and not washing up and drying yourself thoroughly afterwards. It can be gotten from wearing the same clothes again or sharing clothing items with someone else who has Jock Itch. Jock Itch is mostly common among adolescent males.
Q: Does scratching jock itch make it worse?
A: Scratching a Jock Itch can spread it to uninfected areas/pieces of clothing as well as increase the redness of the infected area.