Having an itchy penis can be annoying and embarrassing. The urge to scratch can be so strong that it can be very difficult to go a whole minute without doing it. Sometimes, you might even forget that you are in a public place and that there are people around you who can see what you are doing.
What causes penis itching?
There are several possible causes of penis itching. The most common ones are:
1. Genital herpes
Caused by a virus called herpes simplex virus, or HSV, genital herpes is an infection that brings about pain and itchiness in the general genital region. It can also cause an outbreak of small cluster of blisters that are filled with fluids. Once the virus gets to your body, it can lie dormant for many years and not trigger noticeable signs and symptoms. For this reason, a lot of people that are infected do not know that they have it.
A condition that is also called male thrush, candidiasis is a type of yeast infection in males that occurs on the head of the penis. If you have it, you will experience itchiness under the tip of your penis and your foreskin. In addition, you will notice a rash and redness on the area, as well as experience a burning sensation and have an unusual discharge under your foreskin.
If your skin cells are developing too fast, they will accumulate and form red, itchy, and scaly patches of skin. This condition is known as psoriasis, and it is a chronic disease that can affect your penis and other parts of your body.
4. Genital warts
A sexually transmitted disease, genital warts are caused by the human papillomavirus, or HPV. They are small, flesh-colored bumps that look like cauliflower. If you engage in sexual intercourse, these small bumps may itch and start to bleed, and infect your sex partner.
5. Contact dermatitis
Triggered by an allergen, contact dermatitis is a skin condition characterized by dryness, a red rash, and tiny bumps. If your penis is exposed to an allergen found in soaps, perfumes, fabric conditioners, cloth, and others, it may develop this disease and start getting itchy.
6. Lichen planus
An inflammatory condition that affects the mucous membranes, nails, hair, and skin, including around the genital area, lichen planus triggers small bumps that are flat-topped and purple in color. If you have it on your penis, it can cause pain, ulcers, and discoloration, and lead to sexual dysfunction.
A skin problem that can also affect the male genital area, scabies occurs when there are tiny mites that burrow under your skin. If they find a place around your genital area, they can trigger intense itchiness and leave burrow tracks.
Characterized by the inflammation of the penis glands, balanitis is a disease that can strike your penis and cause various symptoms such as itchiness, swelling, redness, and soreness. In many cases, it can also lead to pain when urinating.
9. Pubic lice
If parasitic insects known as pubic lice find their way into your pubic region, they can attach to your pubic hair and cause intense itchiness. Commonly called crabs, they are a pain to deal with because they can easily be passed on to your sex partner and stick to your underwear, clothes, linen, and other things.
How do you get rid of the itchiness?
Scratching an itchy penis may provide temporary relief, but if done too much, it can put you at risk of infections and injuries. At home, you can whip up the following simple do-it-yourself home remedies to soothe your itchy penis:
Take a clean cloth and wrap it around an ice pack. Apply it on to your penis for about 5 minutes to create a cooling effect that can relieve the itchiness and soreness. If you have been afflicted with balanitis, contact dermatitis, or scabies, this treatment method can be a good quick reliever.
Apple cider vinegar
If you have psoriasis on your penis, you can use apple cider vinegar to deal with the itching. Prepare a clean, empty bowl, and pour in one cup of apple cider vinegar and one cup of water. Mix. Take a clean towel and soak it into the mixture. Dab the wet towel onto your penis to stop the irritation. Leave the mixture to dry on your penis. Rinse with clean water.
If you have a yeast infection or thrush, you can use baking soda to get the itchiness to subside. In a bowl, pour in one cup of baking soda and some lukewarm water to make a paste. Take a small amount of the paste and apply it onto the affected area of your penis. Rinse the mixture off after a few minutes.
Another relief provider for penis itching is Epsom salt. You can add it to your warm bath water, and allow your body to soak for 15 to 20 minutes.
What should you do if the itchiness persists?
If, after trying various home remedies, your penis is still experiencing itchiness, you should visit your doctor right away. Your illness may require a stronger treatment plan that those readily available household products cannot help get rid of.
Your doctor will take a look at your penis to find out what the real cause of your penile itching is. They will ask you questions too, so be honest with your answers. Once they have a diagnosis, they will prescribe you medications that may include:
- Steroid creams
To relieve the itchiness, inflammation, and redness
To cure the itching and inflammation
If the problem is caused by bacteria, an antibiotic can treat it.
If the problem is caused by an allergen, an antihistamine medication can provide relief.
- Antifungal medication
if you have a fungal infection, such as a yeast infection, an antifungal medication can kill off the fungus that caused the problem.