All males have a contracted foreskin when they’re born. It’s tightly wrapped around their penis head and there is usually only a small part of the glans uncovered to allow the infant to eliminate urine. The foreskin remains contracted for a couple of years after birth. It shouldn’t not be forced back as this is perfectly normal. However, as the boy grows up, it should gradually loosen, until it can be pulled back completely. If this doesn’t happen while nearing puberty, then we’re talking about a tight foreskin problem, medically called phimosis.
What’s a Tight Foreskin?
Studies show that around half of boys are able to completely pull back their foreskin by the age of 4. However, it is also perfectly normal for your son to reach the age of 10 with a contracted foreskin. You can consider phimosis a health treat if your boy reaches puberty and the issue persists or anytime sooner if the penis head becomes sore or inflamed.
Contracted Foreskin Health Issues
Infections: Balanitis is the most common health condition caused by phimosis. The lack of hygiene favored by a contracted foreskin cause soreness, inflammation and redness of the penis head (glans). Sometimes a thick discharge under the foreskin is also present.
Urination: in some cases the foreskin can be so tight, that it can prevent proper urination. In this case you should ask for the advice of your GP, as penis hygiene could be seriously affected.
Erection: Sexual intercourse can be painful if phimosis persists during adulthood. A contracted foreskin might prove itself impossible to pull back during an erection. Pain occurs often and thus the sexual act is negatively affected.
Paraphimosis: is the condition when the foreskin can’t return to original position after it was pulled back. This usually happen if an erection occurs while a contracted foreskin is pulled back. It might need emergency medical assistance because blood flow to the penis head is restricted and the glans become swollen and painful.
Treatments and Solutions
As mentioned above phimosis isn’t a health concern if it doesn’t trigger additional health problems. Maintaining a good hygiene is the key for buying a boy’s foreskin additional time to loosen up.
Many parents opt for circumcision for their newborns, in order to solve the penis hygiene problem. However, this is also often a religious choice.
Creams and ointments that contain a weak corticosteroid are also a solution. They should be applied if an infection flares up in the area of the glans.
If you reach adulthood and still suffer from phimosis you should visit a doctor. Surgery might be the only option to solve your issue.
Paraphimosis is treated with an anaesthetic gel applied on the area. If the situation is very serious a small slit could be applied by the surgeon to relieve pressure. Severe cases require a circumcision.