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  1. #1
    Senior Member Smallwheels's Avatar
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    Saddle Sores Cure

    This year I got my first saddle sore. I looked up solutions to it on the web and there were many suggestions. I just wanted to put on the message board what worked extremely well for me. This wasn't an external blister. This was like a deep pimple that got very big. It felt the same too. It hurt if pressure was applied to it.

    Months ago it started. I tried using acne cream on it and it did have an effect. At the same time I was also fighting a never ending cold. I took something called Sinus and Respiratory from New Chapter to relieve my congestion and phlegm. It really worked. It was full of many different herbs. Now I wonder if the minor effects of the acne cream weren't really caused by the Sinus and Respiratory capsules.

    Weeks after the bottle of Sinus and Respiratory capsules were used up the saddle sore got large again. Some of my congestion symptoms were also coming back. I had some Goldenseal tincture around from a previous need. Goldenseal was one of the ingredients in the Sinus and Respiratory formulation. I took the dropper and used about fifteen drops one night. The next day the saddle sore was much smaller. I continued to take the drops for the congestion and the saddle sore got much smaller and now is just a tiny bump.

    Goldenseal is an anti-bacterial herb. It tastes very nasty so always have something to dilute it in your mouth and something tasty to eat to get rid of the bad flavor. Also THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT, take a B complex pill while using it. Goldenseal will totally deplete your B vitamins and make your body really cranky as well as your personality. Never take Goldenseal without using extra B vitamins.

    Goldenseal can be found in vitamin shops or health food stores that sell vitamins. I bought it in a tincture which has super pure alcohol as a transport agent. Unless you've had moonshine you've never tasted alcohol so pure. It's nasty and burns.

    Staying off the bicycle does help the saddle sore condition but it wasn't enough to heal the problem. Using Goldenseal and staying off the saddle caused my problem to almost disappear in four days.
    Smallwheels

    Take my stuff, please. I have way too much. My current goal is to have all of my possessions fit onto a large bicycle trailer. Really.

  2. #2
    Car-free in the South
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    I am wary of "herbal remedies" but that is for a different thread.

    A saddle sore is a sign that you need a better fitting saddle, or better suited clothing to ride in. Also, as a "cure" I'd probably use some anti-bacterial ointment such as Neosporin and then be sure to keep that area well padded while riding. Changing position more often might also help.

  3. #3
    Car-free in the South
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    Rivendell also has an excellent explanation and treatment article here, researched by a dermatologist.

    http://www.rivbike.com/article/misc/saddle_sores

  4. #4
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    I get these from time to time.

    To prevent them I use a dollop of Bag Balm, which you can buy at Walgreens. Beats even the best chamois creme. Massage it into any afflicted or about-to-be afflicted spot.

    To cure them, take a long soaking bath each night. Apply some anti-bacterial ointed and before riding use step #1.

  5. #5
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    If you continue to have a problem, wear bike shorts and wash them frequently. Carfree should be painfree!


    "Think Outside the Cage"

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    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
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    I find this old style practice from my parents & grandparents days still works well for me. Use Cornstarch in the sensitive contact areas. Cornstarch was used as a powder for baby's tender skin long before baby products were invented. I apply like a powder anywhere I come in contact with the saddle under my clothes right on the skin. It acts as a dry lubricant as well as cooling those hotspots/broken skin lesions sores if they occur. It is cheap at your local grocer so take a chance with it.

    Plus do check to see if your saddle fits you properly. It could be the real culprit.
    Last edited by folder fanatic; 06-19-11 at 09:47 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Smallwheels's Avatar
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    My problem was caused by riding a saddle that didn't fit right with all of my winter clothing piled on me. I had underwear, long pants, and then my motorcycle riding pants with the winter liner in them. There were times when moisture would build up because there wasn't enough ventilation. If there were ventilation I would have been too cold in the below zero weather. That is when the saddle sore started. It was my first one. I hope it's my last one.

    Perhaps corn starch will be the thing that saves me if I'm still riding in cold weather next winter. I really hope I'm in the desert southwest by next January.
    Smallwheels

    Take my stuff, please. I have way too much. My current goal is to have all of my possessions fit onto a large bicycle trailer. Really.

  8. #8
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post
    My problem was caused by riding a saddle that didn't fit right with all of my winter clothing piled on me. I had underwear, long pants, and then my motorcycle riding pants with the winter liner in them. There were times when moisture would build up because there wasn't enough ventilation. If there were ventilation I would have been too cold in the below zero weather. That is when the saddle sore started. It was my first one. I hope it's my last one.

    Perhaps corn starch will be the thing that saves me if I'm still riding in cold weather next winter. I really hope I'm in the desert southwest by next January.
    I suggest more "modern" cold weather clothing for next winter. I use cheap "poly-pro" long johns from Target--these are amazingly warm, very light, and durable. Underarmour long underwear is probably even better, but costs a lot more. Tights made specifically for cycling would be best of all for warmth and preventing saddle sores, but they are fairly expensive.

    I tend to wear long pants that are made for hiking as an outer layer in winter. These come in varying weights, and the fabric is designed to be quick drying and stain resistant. They're available from LL Bean, Cabela's and other sporting goods/camping outlets.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  9. #9
    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post
    Perhaps corn starch will be the thing that saves me if I'm still riding in cold weather next winter. I really hope I'm in the desert southwest by next January.
    I live in the Southwest. It works well summer or winter here at least with myself. Or the amount of clothing I am wearing.

  10. #10
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post
    My problem was caused by riding a saddle that didn't fit right with all of my winter clothing piled on me. I had underwear, long pants, and then my motorcycle riding pants with the winter liner in them. There were times when moisture would build up because there wasn't enough ventilation. If there were ventilation I would have been too cold in the below zero weather. That is when the saddle sore started. It was my first one. I hope it's my last one.
    I only get these in the summer. In winter, frostbite takes care of everything below the belt.

  11. #11
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    Found a great natural way to get ride of these if you get one using Tea Tree Oil. Comes in one ounce bottles about $6-$11. Sold at Trader Joes and in the supplement section at some groceries perhaps (look toward the bottom shelves) Anyhow I use it strait out of the bottle and takes just enough to get it the smallest mount of this stuff right on the spot. You can also use another skin oil to dilute it if you like. Test it out on one place first and make sure its not an irritant to you. Its strong stuff and you may want to use it diluted slightly. I use it strait and has a slightly warm feeling on the applied area. Using twice daily for four days or until gone gets rid of them for me. Give it a try, if it works for you this is the cheapest way to treat them. Tea Tree oil is also great for acne as well. Read this to find out more about it! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea_tree_oil

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    Bike shorts and Chamois Buttr work great for me. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

  13. #13
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    I took a pretty straight-forward approach. I washed the area with alcohol, lanced the affected area and cleaned the wound. I used a little more alcohol, applied neosporin and put on a bandaid.

    Then I'm using my bent for the next little while.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

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  14. #14
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    Then I'm using my bent for the next little while.
    Yeah... the last bout of saddle sores I had were caused by a saddle that was a tad too high. It was difficult to notice while riding, but a centimeter drop improved things quite a bit.

  15. #15
    bragi bragi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    Yeah... the last bout of saddle sores I had were caused by a saddle that was a tad too high. It was difficult to notice while riding, but a centimeter drop improved things quite a bit.
    It pays to be really mindful of saddle position. In response to knee pain, I randomly dropped my saddle height about six months ago, and ended up with IT band problems that kept me off the bike for a couple of months. I then calculated the proper saddle height, raised the saddle, and changed the seat post so I could move the saddle forward a cm or so, and things seem to be fine now...

    http://www.ebicycles.com/bicycle-tools/saddle-height

    As far as saddle sores go, I think it's really all about the saddle. if you have the right saddle, you can ride anywhere with regular walking shorts. If you have the wrong saddle, all the padded shorts and lubricants in the world are useless.
    Last edited by bragi; 07-31-12 at 01:50 AM.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member 009jim's Avatar
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    I get the odd "blind pimple" in the saddle area. Best thing for me is just a soapy massage of my whole butt area every morning in the shower.

  17. #17
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    I took a pretty straight-forward approach. I washed the area with alcohol, lanced the affected area and cleaned the wound. I used a little more alcohol, applied neosporin and put on a bandaid.
    I do the same thing.

    typically when I'm living a "Townie Life", and not "On the Road", saddle sores are not an issue.
    a couple of years ago I made an attempt at the Tour Divide doing 1000 miles in 7 days. wet, muddy, cold, and of course long days without having the immediate convenience of doing laundry. I think one night I stopped riding where I was close enough to a water supply to rinse my clothing.

    outside of having a case of perm-bonk, the eruption of saddle sores was a concern.

    these days I put in about 20hrs/wk on the bike, I only wear my cycling clothes once before it goes into the wash.
    for years, I had been in the habit of simply washing my bike clothes in a bucket, then letting it hang dry.
    now days, I definitely use the washing machine and the dryer (low of course), thereby reducing the chances of a bacterial infection.

    I also commute to my hospital job, where I'm quick to use the shower, and put on fresh clean clothes.

    here's a PDF: https://mospace.umsystem.edu/xmlui/b...pdf?sequence=1

    on a more serious note: necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum http://www.google.com/search?client=...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

    I'll skip the gory details there and leave the reading to anyone interested, which should be everyone.

    I heard a story of a cyclist who had massive saddle sores, and started to become sick, which landed him in a hospital, where they discovered his saddle sores had become necrotizing fasciitis.

    I have a tendency to go out on bike tour, often times I like to live life on the bike and just wonder around. In the last 5 years I've done this a fair amount. I also have a tendency to make friends with Hobos, being that I grew up homeless in a 1958 Ford step side van in Ventura. Anyways... I'm quick to notice personal hygiene, and the effects of not taking a daily shower, and wearing dirty clothes all the time.

    for most of us, the discomfort of a saddle sore is enough to throw caution into the wind, however, as cyclists we tend to develop a tolerance to pain, simply push thru our issues, and keep seeking an elusive goal of some sort. when it comes to saddle sores my advice is to not be so casual about the issue, it can be a real danger.

  18. #18
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    I ride almost everyday, I found it's important to have a few pairs of shorts. I wash one--not just rinse it out, and then let it dry in the sun for as long as possible. The sun here in Texas is pretty direct right now and it gets my shorts pretty warm and this works well to make sure no funny things are multiplying. I have found that my only real prob. was from riding a long ride with shorts that were only rinsed and not truly washed, and using too much of my own version of chamois cream day after day.
    I use either neosporin ointment after a shower or hydrocortizone cream for any hot spots. I think the hydrocortizone is better for healing an already developed rash.

  19. #19
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AsanaCycles View Post
    I do the same thing.

    typically when I'm living a "Townie Life", and not "On the Road", saddle sores are not an issue.
    a couple of years ago I made an attempt at the Tour Divide doing 1000 miles in 7 days. wet, muddy, cold, and of course long days without having the immediate convenience of doing laundry. I think one night I stopped riding where I was close enough to a water supply to rinse my clothing.

    outside of having a case of perm-bonk, the eruption of saddle sores was a concern.

    these days I put in about 20hrs/wk on the bike, I only wear my cycling clothes once before it goes into the wash.
    for years, I had been in the habit of simply washing my bike clothes in a bucket, then letting it hang dry.
    now days, I definitely use the washing machine and the dryer (low of course), thereby reducing the chances of a bacterial infection.

    I also commute to my hospital job, where I'm quick to use the shower, and put on fresh clean clothes.

    here's a PDF: https://mospace.umsystem.edu/xmlui/b...pdf?sequence=1

    on a more serious note: necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum http://www.google.com/search?client=...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

    I'll skip the gory details there and leave the reading to anyone interested, which should be everyone.

    I heard a story of a cyclist who had massive saddle sores, and started to become sick, which landed him in a hospital, where they discovered his saddle sores had become necrotizing fasciitis.

    I have a tendency to go out on bike tour, often times I like to live life on the bike and just wonder around. In the last 5 years I've done this a fair amount. I also have a tendency to make friends with Hobos, being that I grew up homeless in a 1958 Ford step side van in Ventura. Anyways... I'm quick to notice personal hygiene, and the effects of not taking a daily shower, and wearing dirty clothes all the time.

    for most of us, the discomfort of a saddle sore is enough to throw caution into the wind, however, as cyclists we tend to develop a tolerance to pain, simply push thru our issues, and keep seeking an elusive goal of some sort. when it comes to saddle sores my advice is to not be so casual about the issue, it can be a real danger.
    Those of us who work in hospitals are also frequently exposed to MRSA, which can cause bad skin infections including saddle sores.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smallwheels View Post
    This year I got my first saddle sore. I looked up solutions to it on the web and there were many suggestions. I just wanted to put on the message board what worked extremely well for me. This wasn't an external blister. This was like a deep pimple that got very big. It felt the same too. It hurt if pressure was applied to it. .
    Sounds like an abscess, which can be harder to get rid of than some of the other ailments which are under the umbrella of 'saddle sore'. In any event, I find that saddle sores are easier to prevent than to cure. Prevention involves having a saddle that it compatible with your anatomy (I live on the Brooks B-17, but that is my butt), and keeping clean. For long rides, lubricants can help- my preferred one is 'bag balm'.

    There is another thread in the commuting forum which is talking about a saddle sore issue....

  21. #21
    BALM Co. 2005trek1200's Avatar
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    In my experience, saddle sores fall into two major categories: severely chaffed/raw skin and actual lesions. In both cases, prevention is far easier than ridding yourself of them; I wont detail every thing you could do, as it has already been touched on above (saddle type/position, bike fit, clothing choice, Chamois Cream). For relief of severely raw skin, i find that Doc's Saddle Sore ointment works wonders and gets things back in order within a few days. Lesions are a different story, which could actually turn serious if youre not careful. While ointments like Doc's and even Neosporin can soothe the area, they actually do little to "heal" or "Cure" it. The best thing to do is make sure that it is kept as clean as possible and swabbed with alcohol to dry it/disinfect it. nothing much to do but let it heal. and if you get a fever, or it starts to well fluid it's bad news go to the doc.
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  22. #22
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    at the risk of giving too much information:

    when I made an attempt at the Tour Divide, the actual stitching in the shorts created a baseball cut pattern all around.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Smallwheels's Avatar
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    The use of goldenseal tincture twice a day shrunk my big bump within a week. There wasn't any trace of it remaining and it hasn't come back. I know it was the goldenseal that did the job because the lump had been around for two months until then.
    Smallwheels

    Take my stuff, please. I have way too much. My current goal is to have all of my possessions fit onto a large bicycle trailer. Really.

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    Wow fascinating! Goldenseal huh?? herbs have a plethora of uses.

    I rode most of this summer in nylon running shorts on my B-17 saddle. After about 2 months, I had some insane saddle sores but my thighs were nice and tan. I couldn't go about my day without noticing the pain they issued from such subtle movements. I ended up scrubbing them big time with a lufa & then extracting the miniscule hair that had gotten rubbed into my skin from endless pedaling. 2 days later I was all healed up.

    au natural~

  25. #25
    etw
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    Quote Originally Posted by robyr View Post
    Rivendell also has an excellent explanation and treatment article here, researched by a dermatologist.

    http://www.rivbike.com/article/misc/saddle_sores
    I think the link has moved to

    http://www.rivbike.com/kb_results.asp?ID=62

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