Jock Itch

Michael Alarcon

Why is it that every time we sit down to watch TV, we're overwhelmed with commercials featuring girls like Jennifer Love Hewitt shucking for Neutrogena, but we never once see skin care-related commercials for guys? Just once, I'd love to see someone like Freddie Prinze, Jr. or Ashton Kutcher do an ad for jock itch. 

Unfortunately, those commercials will probably never happen. That's why it's up to us to help guys get through those times when things start itching, smelling and festering. 

Jock Itch
What is it? It's just a simple fungus, but it's also the nastiest fungus a guy can ever get on his body.

What causes it? The fungus loves warm, moist areas, so it's only natural that it thrives on a guy's applesack. Most of the time, it's caused by not showering immediately after working out -- but it's also due to wearing tight underwear that doesn't breathe. Guys who are overweight and sweat a lot are also targets.

What are the symptoms? In addition to your package itching, you may experience red, scaly, raised bumps that ooze pus (and girls just love when that happens).

How can I get rid of it? "Jock itch is fairly easy to remedy nowadays," says Ronald Reese, M.D., a dermatologist in Redding, Calif. "Most of the time, men can get rid of jock itch simply by wearing proper-fitting undergarments made with breathable fabrics." Reese continues that although these changes in underwear can eventually cure the itch, you might also want to use an over-the-counter cream for quick relief (products that contain miconozale are the best). Of course, if your genitalia starts looking like a McRib sandwich, see a doctor immediately -- it probably means you caught the infection too late.

Secret tip: Wash your workout clothes (especially jock straps and gym shorts) after every workout -- that's where the fungus likes to hang out.

Athlete's Foot
What is it? It's a fungus kind of like the one that causes jock itch, but not as painful -- and when you get it, you'll know.

What causes it? Athlete's foot develops when the feet are trapped in shoes for ungodly periods of time. The shoe is like a Dutch oven, and when it gets hot enough, the foot sweats like Roger Ebert at a weenie roast. Once the foot has been exposed to these conditions long enough, fungus starts to grow, and it's all downhill from there. There's also a chance of catching it if you don't dry your feet thoroughly before putting on socks.

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