One common complaint that urologists hear on a regular basis comes from men who have difficulty retracting their foreskin. The foreskin, or sheath, that covers the glans penis has numerous important functions. It helps to protect the delicate penile tissue from diseases and injury, and it is believed to protect the natural sensitivity of the underlying erogenous tissue. For some men, the foreskin retracts easily by the time adulthood is reached, but for many others, this process may be difficult or impossible. Men who encounter this issue may have a condition known as phimosis, which simply means that the foreskin cannot be withdrawn, or that there is pain on retracting the tissue.
While phimosis can lead to certain health issues, such as impaired circulatory function, pain during intercourse, and even penile cancer, it can be dealt with successfully with the right approach to treatment. Uncircumcised men who want to ensure a healthy penis can benefit from the information offered here.
What is phimosis?
Phimosis simply refers to the inability of (adult) males to retract the foreskin beyond the crown of the penis; phimosis may also be diagnosed when it is painful to pull back this tissue over the glans. This condition is not uncommon, and it can be resolved in most cases by either stretching the foreskin or undergoing a full or partial circumcision.
What causes a tight foreskin?
Infants and young male children are generally unable to withdraw the foreskin completely; this typically cannot be achieved until males reach puberty, and in some cases, adulthood. After this point, men who have torn the foreskin due to aggressive masturbation, or those who are affected by balanitis (an infection of the glans), may find it difficult and/or painful to pull back the sheath over the head of the penis. Balanitis often occurs as the result of poor hygiene, although other factors such as yeast infection or excessive masturbation may also come into play.
Is surgery the only solution?
Historically, men who have had phimosis-related issues have often had circumcision urged on them as the best option for treatment. Although many doctors still advise their patients to opt for full circumcision, recent medical studies have shown that the condition may be treated by less drastic measures. Circumcision is certainly an answer, but some men have also benefited from mechanical stretching of the foreskin. In other cases, men can take a do-it-yourself approach, using gentle manual stretching of the foreskin, accompanied by use of appropriate moisturizing creams, to work through the issue themselves. This process should be carried out carefully, without forcing the tight skin back; it can be successful for men who are cautious and pay adequate attention to penis care.
Caring for an uncircumcised penis
Whether or not a man is experiencing issues withdrawing the foreskin, an uncircumcised penis requires some special treatment when it comes to daily care and maintenance. Men who are uncut need to be sure to pull back the foreskin carefully, without yanking or tugging, to clean away any accumulated body fluids and dead skin cells from underneath. If these substances, which tend to form a cheesy build-up known as smegma, are allowed to remain underneath the foreskin, they can cause infections and swelling, foul odors, and a tendency for the foreskin to stick to the tissue underneath. Washing this area carefully is the first step in promoting a healthy, pleasant penis.
The final phase for at-home penile care involves the use of a moisturizing penis creme (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil), which can help to prevent drying and cracking of the foreskin, not to mention inflammatory conditions like balanitis. A penis health cream that contains vitamin A can help to block penetration by harmful bacteria that can lead to a sore, swollen, unhealthy penis. In addition, all-natural, botanically derived moisturizers like Shea butter are ideal for rehydrating the penis skin and preventing moisture loss which can result in a tight foreskin. Adding a cream like this to the daily penis care regimen can be an effective solution for men who want to avoid the potential side effects of surgical ablation of the foreskin.