For most men, the prepuce is a useful part of their male anatomy. It protects the delicate tissue underneath, promotes sensitivity and even provides natural lubrication during manual stroking and penetration. However, it is not uncommon for men to experience ongoing problems with this fold of flesh and nerve tissue. When a tight prepuce interferes with the ability to achieve full tumescence without pain, or when it can’t be pulled back easily over the head of the male organ, a condition known as phimosis may be diagnosed. Here’s what all intact men should know about their prepuce, phimosis and how the condition may affect their long-term male organ health. |
The anatomy and function of the prepuce
The prepuce is more than just an extra flap of skin that extends over the tip of the male organ. It consists of a double layer of tissue, with skin on the outside and a mucus membrane on the inside. It is full of blood vessels and nerve tissue. As previously mentioned, this tissue is there to protect the sensitive head underneath from the outside environment. Mainly, it protects an infant’s male organ from urine and fecal matter until it is cleaned away.
When a male infant is born, the prepuce is fully adhered to the male organ. Parents are advised not to attempt to pull back the prepuce, as the natural adhesions prevent this, and damage to the delicate tissue may occur if the skin is forced back. The adhesions typically wear away over time as the child handles himself. By the time a male reaches his early teens, the prepuce is generally fully retractable, although some may not be able to pull it back all the way until later, even into early adulthood.
What is phimosis?
Phimosis refers to a condition in which males are unable to retract the prepuce fully over the head of the male organ. In infants,physiological phimosis is normal, as was stated in the previous section. When the condition develops later in adulthood, pathological phimosis may be diagnosed.
Pathological phimosis is generally the result of inflammation of the prepuce, a condition known as balanitis. Men who practice substandard hygiene are more likely to experience this problem. Frequent infections under the prepuce - mainly caused by not cleaning the area properly - can lead to scarring, which can cause new adhesions to develop, preventing the prepuce from retracting properly. Men with phimosis may experience pain during tumescence and may find manual stroking or partner play to be difficult, if not impossible.
Does stretching the prepuce help?
Many online forums encourage men to stretch their prepuces using various manual techniques to resolve ongoing problems with phimosis. However, men who try this run a serious risk of developing tears in the prepuce and/or creating scar tissue that can actually make the problem worse rather than better. There is also a chance that men who do manage to pull their prepuces back in this manner may find that their skin then becomes trapped behind the head of the male organ. This condition is known as paraphimosis and is considered a medical emergency; constricted blood flow to the area can result in tissue death, leading to permanent damage of the male organ.
Before attempting any self-help measures, it is best to see a qualified medical professional for an evaluation and treatment plan.
How is phimosis treated?
Isolated cases of phimosis are generally approached through hygiene measures. Men are encouraged to clean the area thoroughly, gently pulling back the prepuce - never forcing it - to remove any accumulated smegma. Hydrocortisone creams may also be recommended. For men who have chronic problems with phimosis, surgical removal of the sheath (full or partial) may be an option.
For a little extra help in keeping the male skin clean and maintaining its natural elasticity, men may opt to use a male organ health crème (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil). The ingredients in a quality product, such as vitamins A, C and E, may help promote healing, as well as keeping the skin naturally stretchy and supple, while plant-based emollients like Shea butter can soothe and heal sore, distressed tissue.
Visit www.menshealthfirst.com for more information most common male organ health issues, tips on improving male organ sensitivity, and what to do to maintain a healthy male organ. John Dugan is a professional writer who specializes in men's health issues and is an ongoing contributing writer to numerous online web sites.
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