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What is Chafing?

Chafing is a skin irritation caused by repeated rubbing. Chafing usually occurs around the groin, underarms and nipples, but it can occur anywhere. Anybody can experience chafing. However, chafing is particular problem in overweight people and in athletes.

If chafed skin lasts more than two days after the original source of irritation is removed, you should contact your doctor.

What Causes Chafing?

Chafing is usually caused by any activity that requires skin to repeatedly rub against another area of skin or article of clothing. Moisture, either from sweat or rain, can worsen chafing. Chafing can also be caused by a poorly fitted bra.

Symptoms of Chafing?

The most common symptom of chafing is a painful stinging or burning sensation.

Can Chafing be Prevented?

Yes. Some common ways to prevent chaffing are:

  • Apply a lubricant like petroleum jelly to areas of your skin that are likely to chafe during physical activity.
  • Wear clothing that serves as a barrier between layers of skin (athletic tights or cycling shorts).
  • Avoid coarse clothing. Wear 100% cotton fabric against your skin.
  • Avoid activity that is causing chafing.
  • Wear clothing that is free of moisture, dried sweat, chemicals, dirt and other debris.

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