Sun’s out, guns out! Summer is in effect and as a result, men are more likely to get a sweat rash on their penis. A heat rash anywhere is uncomfortable, but a sweat rash on the penis is especially uncomfortable. It’s red, it’s angry, and it’s easy to stave off if you know how. Let’s talk about the different types of sweat rashes, who’s most likely to get them, how to treat them, and of course, how to prevent them from happening in the future.
What Is a Sweat Rash?
Also known as a heat rash, this happens when the skin’s sweat glands get blocked. The sweat can’t get to the surface of the skin to evaporate. This causes inflammation and, presto change-o, a sweat rash! Its symptoms include little red bumps on the skin, itchiness, and a prickling sensation. There are three types of sweat rash:
- Miliaria crystalline – This is the most common form of sweat rash. It is marked by small, clear (sometimes white) bumps filled with fluid. The fluid is actually sweat. This type is not painful or itchy.
- Miliaria rubra – This is referred to as prickly heat. It presents as red bumps on the skin, lack of sweat in the infected area, and inflammation. If it progresses, the bumps can fill with pus (and it’s then called miliaria pustalosa). It is the most uncomfortable type because it occurs in the deep layers of the skin.
- Miliaria profunda – The least common type of heat rash, it occurs in the deepest skin layer (the dermis). It creates big, tough, flesh-colored bumps. It can be chronic in some cases.
Who Is Most Likely to Have a Sweat Rash?
People who are obese, live in a humid climate, are on bed rest, or who exercise and then don’t shower after are all very prone to sweat rash. People who take medications, like those for Parkinson’s disease or medications that raise body temperature, can also be more likely to have sweat rash.
How to Treat Sweat Rash on the Penis
The first rule of treatment for a penis rash (all rashes for that matter) is to pull back on all non-functional touching (basically only elimination and showering). The less contact the penis has with anything, the better.
Next up, tenderly clean the penis with lukewarm water and a mild cleanser; an all-natural baby wash is perfect. Rinse thoroughly and air dry. It’s okay to pat dry with a towel instead of airdrying, but again, any unnecessary contact may intensify discomfort and slow down healing.
Also, a cool compress is a great way to reduce the heat and discomfort of a sweat rash. Now, don’t go grabbing an ice pack! The best way to make a cool compress is by dunking a soft washcloth in cool water, wringing it out, and then putting it directly on the penis until the cloth is no longer cool. Repeat until relieved.
If the penis rash worsens or spreads, see a doctor immediately.
How to Prevent Sweat Rash on the Penis
Sweat rash on the penis can be easily avoided with a few easy, logical tips. First, keep the penis and genital area clean and dry. Some people choose to use a powder like Gold Bond to help keep the area dry. Shower immediately after exercise or any sweat-inducing activity. Also, let the penis air dry as often as possible.
Lastly, a great way to keep penis rashes at bay is to moisturize the penis daily. Using a specially formulated penis health creme (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil, which has been clinically proven safe and mild for skin) can drastically improve this delicate skin. Look for crèmes with moisturizers like vitamin E and shea butter, which are less likely to irritate skin than are other emollients. Use a crème with an array of penis-happy vitamins like A, B, C, and D to promote cell regeneration and collagen production and to keep bacteria away. Adding this final step is a great way to prevent sweat rash on the penis.