Whether he is an actual athlete or not, a man can easily come down with that all-too-familiar curse known as jock itch. Unless he’s one of those rare guys who actually enjoys having an itchy penis, a man is going to want to avoid this situation if at all possible. Certainly taking basic steps to maintain adequate penis health can be a big help, but there are other tips that can also come in handy.
A fungus among us
Most men think of jock itch as just that rash that makes their manhood itch like crazy and that inevitably leads to them being caught scratching their equipment just as that hot woman they wanted to impress decides to look their way. Not everyone is aware of just what jock itch is.
Known medically as tinea cruris, jock itch is a form of ringworm – a fact that leads many men to shudder and think they have some nasty invasive worm roaming around their midsection. Actually, ringworm is not a worm at all: it’s a fungus. Like other fungi, jock itch is really fond of hot, moist areas, like the groin.
Jock itch presents as a red, flat rash, which may be somewhat clear in the center and redder around the borders. The border may also be raised somewhat higher than the rest of the infection.
As the name implies, jock itch can be intensely itchy. It’s also very contagious, which accounts for the fact that an estimated 20% of the population gets jock itch at some time in their lives.
Fortunately, jock itch is not spread through the air; unfortunately, it is spread through skin on skin contact, which means that if it’s present on the penis (or the surrounding area), it can put a real crimp in a man’s love life. It also means that if a man’s partner has it, he needs to take precautions to keep it from spreading. Abstinence is the best way to prevent spreading, but in some instances use of a condom can be effective. (This does not apply to areas of the body not covered by the condom, of course.)
But jock itch can also spread through contact with infected items, not just by direct skin-on-skin contact. So, for example, if a man with jock itch dries off his manhood in the locker room and then his buddy borrows his towel and dries off, the pal may be coming down with an itchy penis of his own soon. The same goes for sharing affected clothing or bedsheets.
So guys interested in preventing jock itch should do the following:
– Air out the penis. Warmth and moisture breed fungi, so spending some time letting the penis and balls “air out” on a regular basis is a good idea. This is one reason many men prefer to sleep nude.
– Change clothing often. If a man sweats a lot, he should change trousers and underwear during the course of the day in order to keep moisture from accumulating. He also should definitely change out of clothes he has been exercising in.
– Shower. Showering regularly is a good idea, and definitely after a workout or other form of heavy physical activity. It’s also important to dry the area completely with a clean, dry towel.
– Go for boxers. Tight briefs tend to create a warmer groin situation and to increase the likelihood of sweat. Loose-fitting boxers are often a better choice.
It also pays to keep the penis in excellent health, which can decrease the chances of an itchy penis and help the penis be better prepared for jock itch if it occurs. Regular use of a first rate penis health crème (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil, which is clinically proven mild and safe for skin) is best. A crème with both Shea butter and vitamin E (two excellent hydrators) keeps skin moist and supple. If the crème also includes alpha lipoic acid, it helps the penis fight free radicals and limit oxidative stress, which boosts the overall level of penis health and keeps the organ looking healthy and attractive.