Jock itch is an uncomfortable itch that affects the inner parts of the thighs and the crotch area. The infection is usually caused by fungi or yeasts, which thrive well in the warm, moist atmosphere of the groin. Fungal jock itch presents with a ring-shaped rash that has a slightly raised border. For this reason, it is sometimes called the ringworm of the groin.
The microorganisms responsible for jock itch live on the skin, usually without causing any problems. However, when moisture and warmth increase for prolonged periods of time, these microorganisms multiply rapidly and cause an itch. Jock itch is especially common in physically active individuals, who are more likely to sweat. It also occurs often in obese people and those who wear very tight clothing. Jock itch is more common in men than in women 1. In this article, we will discuss the causes, symptoms, and remedies of jock itch.
Cause #1: Ringworm Fungus
Ringworm fungus, also called tinea, is the commonest cause of jock itch. The fungus thrives well in a warm, moist atmosphere. Therefore, people who are physically active, such as athletes, are more at risk because they are more likely to sweat and remain warm.
This provides the ideal conditions for the fungus to overgrow. Sharing contaminated clothing and equipment also can increase the chances of infection. For this reason, exercise equipment must be disinfected regularly. People also should not share towels or other garments.