Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Can shaving pubic hairs cause infection?"
It's summer and I've started to shave my bikini line. Recently it started to itch and there are discolored bumps that I'm weorried about. Is this an infection or simply the hairs growing back?
Shaving pubic hair is associated with many different consequences not limited to nicks, cuts, burns, rash, blisters, ingrown hair and additionally, infection. One commonly seen skin infection is known as folliculitis. Shaving can create an opening that allows bacterial entry into the skin. This can further lead to inflammation and promote bacterial overgrowth leading to folliculitis. This can occur in any area of the body where hair is present. The genital skin is sensitive and is easily irritated by shaving, and thus predisposed to bacterial infection. Most commonly, folliculitis occurs as a result of a bacterium known as Staph aureus, and sometimes yeast or other fungus. If you are concerned you have an infection, you must seek medical attention. Symptoms may include a rash, pimples or bumps that may crust over. Your doctor can help correctly diagnose this and can more importantly, help guide proper treatment. In addition, if you are sexually active, you may attribute the itching and bumps to shaving, but it is important to rule out other sexually transmitted diseases or other disease processes that maybe responsible for your symptoms. Therefore, I would strongly encourage you to see a doctor, speak to them to address your concerns and discuss your symptoms in more detail.
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