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Jock Itch - Topic Overview

How is jock itch treated?

Most ringworm infections of the skin, such as jock itch, can be treated at home with antifungal creams and powders you can buy without a prescription. But have your doctor look at any infection that does not go away, is severe, or comes back. To treat jock itch, follow these steps:

  • Wash the rash with soap and water. Spread an antifungal cream over the rash. Apply the cream beyond the edge of the rash.
  • Use an antifungal cream or powder that contains terbinafine, miconazole, or clotrimazole. You can buy these products without a prescription. Brand names include Lamisil, Lotrimin, Micatin, and Monistat. Follow the directions on the package, and don't stop using the medicine just because your symptoms go away. Use the medicine exactly as the label says. If symptoms do not improve after 2 weeks, call your doctor.
  • In rare cases, ringworm of the skin causes large areas of blisters. If your ringworm forms blisters, you can use compresses (such as Burow's compress, which you can buy without a prescription) to soothe and dry out the blisters. After the skin is dried out, use antifungal creams that you can buy without a prescription.
  • If you have jock itch and athlete's foot, you should treat both to prevent reinfecting your groin when you put on your underwear.

How can I prevent jock itch?

You can help prevent jock itch by keeping your groin, inner thighs, and buttocks clean and dry. Dry off well after you exercise and shower. Try these other steps to prevent jock itch:

  • Wash your workout clothes, underwear, socks, and towels after each use.
  • Wear shower shoes when you use public showers and locker rooms.
  • If you have athlete's foot, you should treat it. During treatment, put your socks on before you put on your underwear. This will prevent the spread of the fungus from your feet to your groin.
  • If you keep getting athlete's foot, dry your feet last when you towel off after a shower or bath. This can help prevent spreading infection from your feet to your groin.

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: March 12, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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