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Balanitis: Prevention, Complications, Outlook


Risk factors

How to prevent Balanitis?
Preventing balanitis is as easy as practicing proper hygiene. Shower every day, especially after you sweat or engage in sexual intercourse. You can also prevent balanitis by taking simple actions stated below.

Avoiding irritants
Possible irritants to avoid include Soaps and bubble bath, Baby wipes, Creams, Latex condoms, Lubricants.
You can buy emollients to use instead of soap and latex-free condoms made for sensitive skin.

Penis hygiene
To keep your penis clean, you should:
  • Make sure the tip of your penis is completely dry and free of urine after urinating
  • Carefully wash the head of your penis with water every day and gently clean under your foreskin
  • Make sure you dry your penis thoroughly after bathing or showering
  • This advice also applies to children, although young boys may not yet be able to clean under their foreskin because it may not fully pull back. This should not be forced and should eventually become possible as they get older.
  • Babies and young children who still wear nappies may also be at a higher risk of balanitis due to the warm and moist conditions, so make sure you change your child's nappy regularly.


Preventing STIs
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can sometimes cause balanitis, so reducing your chances of picking up one of these infections may lower your risk of developing the condition.
STIs can often be prevented by using appropriate contraception and taking other precautions, such as:
  • Using condoms every time you have vaginal or anal sex
  • Using a condom to cover the penis, or a latex or plastic square (dam) to cover the female genitals, if you have oral sex
  • Not sharing sex toys, or washing them and covering them with a new condom before anyone else uses them.


What are the complications of balanitis?
You should seek treatment quickly to reduce your chances of developing complications from balanitis. Possible complications include:
  • Scar and narrow the opening of the penis (meatal stricture)
  • Make it difficult and painful to retract the foreskin to expose the tip of the penis (a condition called phimosis)
  • Affect the blood supply to the tip of the penis
  • Increase the risk of penile cancer

Allergic dermatitis can be a cause of balanitis that involves extreme itching, rash, hives, and inflamed skin. This inflammation can lead to scarring. Scar tissue in the penis opening can cause the opening to narrow. This can lead to lasting discomfort and difficulty urinating.

What is the prognosis for balanitis?
Most cases of balanitis can be controlled with medicated creams, and the use of topical medications and good hygiene. Surgery is not needed most of the time.

Balanitis symptoms may only last a few days if you address them as soon as you recognize them. Long periods of balanitis may be a cause for concern. These longer cases can usually be shortened with prescribed medications or an over-the-counter treatment. But proper diagnosis is important.

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