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How Do I Prevent Chafing?

Petroleum jelly can help with chafing.
Article Details
  • Written By: Alex Tree
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 17 October 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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To prevent chafing, use anti-chafing products and wear clothing that fits well and does not have rough seams. Clothing that fits poorly, whether it is too lose or too tight, can irritate your skin as the day wears on due to an excessive amount of friction against your skin. Likewise, clothing with rough seams can be abrasive to skin, also leading to chafing and rawness. If wearing different clothing does not help you prevent chafing, try using anti-chafing products in addition to wearing properly fitting clothes with smooth seams. These products are basically lubricants, and some even act as sunscreen or moisturizer.

One way to prevent chafing is to wear properly fitting clothing, especially if you are an athlete who wears snug clothing. Sports bras, running shorts, and other kinds of athletic gear can rub against your skin and cause skin chafing if it does not fit well. The clothing item might be too loose or too tight. In addition, you should try to avoid wearing new athletic clothing to an important event because new clothing is generally stiffer and less forgiving than clothing that has already been broken in. Sometimes new clothing also has excess dyes and chemicals in it that contribute to chafing when rubbed against the skin.

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Another way to prevent chafing is to check your clothing for rough seams and avoid wearing pieces that have them. Rough seams can be on properly fitting clothing, but they are usually not found on well-made clothing. Turn the garment inside out and run your fingers along the seams, which is where the pieces of fabric are stitched together. If the stitching seems rough to your finger tips, imagine how noticeable it will be after wearing it for a full day or exercising in it. The rough stitching might rub against your skin until it is raw, which is essentially what chafing is.

It can be difficult to prevent chafing during exercise or marathons with all-natural solutions, so some people turn to anti-chafing products. Anti-chafing products are usually applied to potential problem areas before the chafing begins, but some products can help prevent chafing after it has begun. Such products are available in various forms, from powder to cream forms, and sometimes contain sunscreens, moisturizers, or other beneficial ingredients. Their other ingredients are varied, so it can take some trial and error to find the best product to prevent chafing for you.

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