Eczema on penis causes itchy red dry skin on penis head or shaft. It is also known as penile dermatitis. Penile eczema can also affect men that are circumcised and cause painful sore on penis. For uncircumcised men, the best way to get rid of eczema on foreskin permanently is circumcision. However, there are other types of treatment listed below for those who do not want to cut the foreskin off. Those remedies can also be used by circumcised individuals.
What is Eczema? – Eczema is a medical condition which is also known as atopic dermatitis. The condition causes the skin to develop rough patches that may be inflamed with blisters. The blisters may itch and bleed and the skin condition can appear anywhere on the body.
It normally begins with a red, irritated, and an itchy area of the skin. This condition is also known to cause penile inflammation. Eczema also causes dry sore foreskin or penile shaft which can last longer even after the initial symptoms of redness are gone.
Eczema on penis is also referred to as penile dermatitis. When you have eczema on your penis you will experience soreness and itchiness of the affected areas of the skin on or around the penis. This condition causes a lot of discomforts especially if it appears on the penis.
The penis is the most sensitive part in males due to a large number of nerves in the penis. That explains why any slight irritation to it can be rather discomforting.
There are two major types of eczema that may present themselves on or around the penis. These are:
Irritant Penile Dermatitis
This results from irritations caused by irritants such as heat and sweat or such activities that may lead to increased friction. This will irritate the skin and is considered to be one of the most common cause eczema on male private parts
Allergic Penile Dermatitis.
This type of penile dermatitis arises from allergic responses to stimuli such as latex and certain chemical compounds that the skin may be allergic to.
As the names suggest, the two categories of penile eczema are arrived at according to their particular causes.
Causes of Eczema on penis
As much eczema is a medical condition, it is not much of a reason for serious concern. This is because the condition can be easily treated and the effects of its symptoms controlled easily at home. In the event of contracting Eczema on penis, most men tend to rush into thinking that it is a condition resulting from a sexually transmitted infection.
Well, it is advisable to seek a diagnosis from a qualified medical health practitioner if you are unsure of that itch that comes unannounced and is accompanied by bumps on and around your penis.
Some of the most common causes of Eczema on penis are sweat, certain materials of clothing, heat, latex, cleansing or cosmetic products, and friction.
A point to note, however, is that some sexually transmitted infections may present themselves with symptoms that resemble those of eczema. We strongly recommend that you be sure about the causes of such conditions so as to know the exact course of treatment to embark on.
Eczema of the penis may present itself on or along the penis shaft or even on the penis head (also known as the glans). The condition may lead to discoloration of the skin and rash may develop on the affected area. In some cases, the skin may become dry and scaly and begin to peel off.
The symptoms will definitely be followed by an itch that may be somehow relieving to scratch but it can also be painful in some instances. Eczema on penis can present a lot of pain, especially when having sex or even passing urine if it appears on the glans.
It is advisable to avoid scratching the areas of the penis that are hit with eczema infections. This is because scratching causes the skin to break; leaving open sores that may lead to further infection by other factors like bacteria. Such cases may lead to contracting other diseases that may otherwise have been prevented.
Mild eczema is known to resolve on its own while severe eczema might require medical attention.
The main causes of eczema are explained as follows:
Cleansing or Cosmetic Products
These are items that are used when bathing, after bathing, hair removal, and aftershaves. They may include soaps, shampoos, shower gels, shaving creams, body lotions, petroleum gels, shaving tools, and hair removal creams. These products are known to contain certain chemical formulae that may not augur well with the skin.
These products might cause irritation and consequently trigger eczema to develop on or around the penis. Some of the cosmetic products in use can also worsen preexisting conditions of mild eczema. Such cosmetic products that are known to worsen the condition are known to be the types that contain alcohol.
Please take note that you may use the right cleansing and cosmetic products but still contract penile dermatitis as a result of the reaction with the detergents or fabric softeners used when cleaning or washing your undergarments.
Latex Allergic reaction on the penis skin
Latex is the primary material used in making rubber. Majority of the times that men come into contact with latex is when they use condoms. Latex can be found in both male and female condoms. There are people who are naturally irritated by rubber.
It is the latex in the rubber that causes this irritation. Condoms are made of rubber and the latex in the condoms can also cause eczema to develop on the penis. Most men tend not to realize that they react with certain types of condoms.
It would be right to seek the right advice from a medical healthcare provider on the right type of condom for your skin and not to refrain from practicing safe sex due to this kind of a reaction.
Sweat and Heat.
Heat and sweating are related. When there is too much heat, the skin generates sweat. These can be experienced when one is engaged in vigorous duties like physical jobs, sports, or even regular exercise. The heat may cause the skin to become tender and may lead to soreness and itchiness around the genitals.
Due to the nature in which the penile area is normally covered when dressing, it is much easier to retain a lot of heat around the area that may consequently lead to intense sweating. This creates higher chances for the condition to develop.
Clothing (way of dressing and type of undergarments)
Almost everyone puts on undergarments. We all have different preferences for the undergarments that we wear. Some men love to don tight boxer underpants while others love to put on the loose type of boxers. The tight boxers can be a major cause of friction around the genitals of a man. The friction is likely to cause penile dermatitis to develop.
Apart from the friction, the tight undergarments are known to retain a lot of heat on or near the skin and they also do not allow the skin to breathe properly. This suffocation of the skin and the friction caused are also likely to lead to eczema developing on or around the penis.
The third major issue in regards to clothing is the type of materials used to make the undergarments that most men wear. The type of fabric matters a lot when it comes to matters eczema on or around the penis. It is therefore advisable to consider putting on materials that may not irritate your skin. The most recommended fabric is cotton which is usually soft and also acts as a better absorbent of sweat than most of the other fabrics.
Symptoms of Eczema on penis
This condition tends to frequent the glans and the penis shaft when it appears on or around the penis. However, it can also appear on the scrotal sac too depending on the intensity of the infection or the area.
Eczema on penis can manifest itself in several different forms. The condition normally begins with a rash developing on the skin with the affected area reddening. What follows is that the affected area of the skin becomes dry and it begins scaling and peeling off.
Blisters or bumps may also begin to develop and they can be itchy. The peeling off of the skin may also cause pain and subsequent bleeding. The peeling will also leave behind open sores and in some cases, the sores may begin to dry up and leave behind crusty lesions.
Penile eczema can cause severe itching which may lead to rigorous scratching. The scratching may also cause the skin to tear, leaving behind open sores.
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Medical Treatment of Eczema on penis
As we have discussed earlier in this article, most conditions of mild penile dermatitis infections are known to resolve on their own. However, even the mild conditions can be quite discomforting. There are medical solutions that can be used to treat the condition and reduce the effects of the symptoms. The treatment options include the following:
The Use of Antihistamines
Antihistamines can be simply described as drugs that are used to treat allergies. You can use antihistamines which are readily available as over-the-counter drugs to help ease the itching that comes as a result of eczema on your penis.
These can help to bring relief to the penis especially at night and will reduce the urge to scratch the affected part. This further reduces the risks of contracting further infections that may result from sores caused by scratching.
The Use of Emollients
An emollient is a lubricant that can be used to soften dry skin. In this case, the emollients that can be used may include lanolin, plant oils, mineral oils, and cocoa butter. These emollients will soften the dry areas of the skin that are affected by the eczema. This will reduce the effects of the peeling and also reduce the scaling of the skin. They also help to keep the skin moisturized.
The Use of Ultra Violet Light Therapy
This kind of therapy is rarely used to treat Eczema on penis. I can only apply in cases where Eczema on penis is severe. This kind of treatment is known to expose males to the risks of contracting penile cancer since it is combined with a drug called Psoralen which makes the skin sensitive to UV light. This kind of therapy is done under the supervision of highly qualified medical personnel only.
The Use of Steroids
There are topical application steroids available as creams or gels. These can be applied to the affected areas of the penis to help cure Eczema on penis. It is good to note, however, that such steroids are only good to use upon getting prescription from a medical doctor. This will help to reduce the possible adverse effects that may accompany the use of such drugs.
Prevention of Eczema on penis
As the old adage goes, “prevention is better than cure,” it is easier and cheaper to prevent Eczema on penis than it is to treat it. Prevention helps to eliminate the infection and the effects it has on the penis. These effects include pain, itchiness, cosmetic beauty, and general discomfort.
There are several different ways to prevent eczema from appearing on the penis. This can also be observed when treating penile eczema to ensure fast healing. They include the following:
Avoiding contact with allergens
Allergens are the main contributing causes of irritation that may occur on the skin around the penis area in regards to penile eczema. It is advisable to identify the allergens that you are reactive to and try as much as possible to avoid them. This will help you to prevent eczema from appearing on your penis.
Some of the most common allergens you can inspect may include the creams you use regularly especially aftershaves, the kind of perfumes and body sprays you use often, the kinds of soap that you use both for showering and the detergents you use when washing your undergarments, the type of fabrics used to make your undergarments, and the body lotions you mostly use.
You can also seek professional medical help in identifying the allergens that react with your skin the most.
Refrain from scratching the penis area
When you scratch an already irritated area of the skin around the penis, you are likely to increase the chances of an eczema infection. The act of scratching leaves the area of the skin weaker and may also cause tears and breakage of the skin.
This can not only worsen the eczema infection but may also provide room for other types of infections to occur. Being the most difficult thing to do during an eczema infection period, you can put on light gloves when going to sleep as the urge to scratch can come when you are asleep. The light gloves will help reduce the level of damage caused by the nails when scratching.
Use moisturizers and emollients
Moisturizers and emollients will help to keep the skin moisturized at all times and eliminate the chances of the skin drying. The action of moisturizing will prevent eczema from developing. You can use moisturizing creams and lotions that are readily available.
Moisturizing lotions with plant extracts are the best to use. You can use any of your choices but just remember to keep the skin from drying and flaking. You can also drink a lot of water to help reduce the chances of eczema appearing on the penis. Please ensure that the moisturizers and emollients that you use do not contain alcohol. Alcohol is known to worsen conditions of eczema.
Put on loose undergarments
Loose clothing, especially loose undergarments, will allow for proper circulation of air around the genital areas. This allows the skin to breathe freely. The loose undergarments will also minimize friction between your skin and the garments you are putting on. This action minimizes the risk of an eczema infection appearing on the penis.
Use condoms that are free from latex
When practicing safe sex, it is important that you go for condoms that are free from latex. Latex is a common allergen to many and avoiding it will help you to minimize the chances of being infected with Eczema on penis.
Avoid frequent shaving and poor hair removal techniques
Hair removal techniques such as waxing and tweezing may not be appropriate to be applied on the penis and the surrounding areas of the penis. This is because the skin on the penis is usually thin and can be more easily damaged by these kinds of hair removal techniques.
Frequently shaving the penis may also cause irritation on the skin due to its thinness. It is advisable to give your skin proper time to heal after each shaving so as to avoid the likelihood of eczema developing on the penis. Poor shaving can also cause ingrown hair bumps on penis shaft.
Wash your genital area appropriately
It is important that you check your hygiene properly. It is also not advisable to take very hot showers as most people like to. Hot showers damage the skin and leave it prone to infections. The skin on the penis is thinner and weaker than the skin on the other parts of the body.
This, therefore, means that it gets more easily damaged during hot shower sessions than the skin on the other parts of the body. You are advised, therefore, to avoid hot showers but keep your showers lukewarm and short. You should pat the penis area dry after showering with a clean towel. Keep it in mind when showering that you use the right soap for your skin too.
Keep the temperature around the penis steady
It is always good to keep the area around the penis warm. Cold air is known to worsen the condition and symptoms of penile eczema as it also leads to drying of the skin faster.
Reduce your stress levels
Stress is also a trigger for eczema outbreaks. This can also apply to Eczema on penis. It is important to come up with proper strategies for coping with stress to reduce the risks of frequent eczema outbreaks.
How to Get Rid of Eczema on penis Using Natural Home Remedies
There exists a raft of measures that can be taken to combat Eczema on penis at home. These remedies can at times work as a substitute for medical treatment but in most cases, they mainly deal with the symptoms. Some of these natural and home remedies may include the following methods:
Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe Vera is known worldwide as a good anti-itching and anti-inflammatory remedy. It is also a naturally existing antiseptic. Aloe Vera is readily available as an already extracted gel in the form of lotions and creams or as a natural plant and can be used in either state. It is, therefore, an excellent home remedy for eczema.
How to use Aloe Vera to treat eczema
- Pick one Aloe Vera leaf, rinse it clean, and then cut through it to extract the gel.
- Gently apply the gel topically to the affected area of the penis then allow it to dry.
- Rinse it off with warm water.
- You can repeat this procedure two times daily for better results.
Apply cold compresses on the affected area
Cold compresses will help to reduce the itching sensation and the redness on the skin and provide temporary relief to the penis.
You can apply the following procedure:
- You can wrap some ice cubes or an ice block with a face towel.
- Press the ice gently on the area of the skin that is affected by eczema.
- Do this repeatedly for a few days until eczema starts to heal.
The use of essential oils
Essential oils are oils that are of greater nutritional and health values than the regular oils. Most of the essential oils are known to ease certain skin conditions such as irritation and itching. These oils also help to restore the skin’s normal and natural condition.
Some of the best essential oils are lavender, geranium, basil, frankincense, lemongrass, cypress, and tea tree oils.
You can use any of the essential oils by following the procedure below:
- Take a cotton swab and dip it in the oil.
- Rub the cotton swab gently on the affected area to smear the oil evenly and allow the oil to sit for a few minutes.
- Rinse off the oil with warm water.
- Repeat the procedure for a few days for better results.
Vitamins A, C, D and B5
These vitamins are essential for the good health of the skin. They also help in boosting the immune system which helps the body to fight off the infection on its own.