What is jock itch?
Jock itch is a fungal skin infection that is sometimes also referred as ringworm of the groin. Damp conditions are best suited for thriving by fungus that causes jock itch.
Jock Itch Symptoms
As the name for this rash implies, symptoms include itching and / or a burning feeling usually in the areas of the groin, thighs, or folds in the skin. It may even involve the genitals. These rashes may appear reddish, tan, or brown, with flaking or cracking skin.
Who Gets Jock Itch?
Nearly everybody gets a jock itch rash at some point in life. Owing to genitalia, boys and adult men are more affected by jock itch rash than women. Jock itch in men occurs due to prolonged wetness in the groin area and friction with clothes or skin. Similarly, female jock itch occurs due to excessive sweating; and sometimes the jock rash appears even beneath the breasts.
An athlete's foot infection can also cause jock itch if the same towel is used to dry feet and then the groin area. People with compromised immune system (HIV/AIDS, cancer), overall health issues (diabetes, obesity), and other predisposing skin conditions (eczema) are more prone to be jock itch.
Jock itch in women is less common. Still cases of female jock itch are prevalent.
Is Jock Itch Contagious?
Most cases of jock itch are not contagious; however cases caused by an infection may be transmitted through skin or sexual contact. Sharing of apparels, locker room towels and other public amenities (which may be infected) can cause jock itch rash. Fungal jock itch also transmits through close skin contact.
Though easily curable; some uncommon cases of prolonged jock itch may not be curable. These resistant cases may be controlled with proper medication & treatment. Usually jock itch rash clears itself completely without any treatment.
Jock Itch Complications
An infrequent complication can arise if jock itch rash spreads past the groin onto the thighs and genitals. Secondly, scratching or rubbing of skin can uncommonly deepen the infection, causing cellulitis or abscess formation.
Skin discoloration is another potential complication which is temporary in nature. It includes:
1. post-inflammatory hypopigmentation (lighter than the regular skin color)
2. post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (darker then the regular skin color)
The Best Jock Itch Treatment is- Prevention
Since fungus and bacteria thrive in warm, dark, and damp conditions, being aware of and reducing these conditions can help treat and prevent jock itch and athlete's foot. When working out, wear boxer underwear or no underwear. Expose your body to plenty of free circulating air. And of course cleaning with a natural anti fungal soap like Defense Soap when you bathe or shower is a great idea.
Conclusively, maintaining good skin hygiene prevents fungal jock itch rashes.