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Did you know? Boys are born with a natural narrowing of the foreskin. Many parents wonder about this and either have it treated prematurely or hurt the baby by pulling the foreskin back too much when cleaning. Unfortunately, the lack of information still often leads to long-term discomfort. That’s why this article will tell you everything you need to know about foreskin contraction (phimosis).
Narrowing Of The Foreskin – Quite Normal In Little Boys
Over 90 percent of all boys are born with a natural contraction of the foreskin. This serves to protect the sensitive glans from pathogens. Over time, the natural foreskin constriction loosens. In most cases, the foreskin can be completely retracted at the age of 2-3 years.
How To Avoid Long-term Damage
Many parents pull back the foreskin on their baby out of ignorance in order to clean the penis. However, forcible retraction can be very harmful in the long term. It causes injuries to the foreskin, which can lead to long-term foreskin contraction.
So you should be careful when cleaning. It is sufficient to wash the penis carefully with water. Since the natural foreskin constriction is there to keep germs out, it is not necessary to clean under it by hook or by crook. Therefore, hands-off cotton swabs or similar to get under it.
What Types Of Foreskin Constriction Are There?
In addition to the natural narrowing of the foreskin, which is more of a sticking together of the foreskin and glans, there is also primary phimosis and secondary phimosis.
Boys are already born with primary phimosis. In this case, the foreskin remains very tight and does not widen sufficiently in infancy.
With secondary phimosis, on the other hand, boys are not born. Initially, the foreskin can be pushed back normally. However, repeated forcible retraction or recurrent inflammation can scar the tissue, making it narrower. It happens quite often that the ignorance of parents is the reason for causing secondary phimosis.
When Is Treatment Necessary?
If your son is born with a natural adhesion of the glans and foreskin, you do not need to worry at first. Most of them widen at the age of 2 to 3 years. If the constriction still exists at around 5 years of age, you should consult a doctor to be on the safe side.
Chronic foreskin constrictions should definitely be treated. Those affected usually suffer from very unpleasant pain in the long term. These occur when retracting for cleaning, but erections can also lead to severe tearing of the skin. In the case of particularly tight phimosis, there may even be effects on urination. Long-term phimosis often makes hygiene so difficult that sufferers can develop unpleasant inflammation, which in the worst case can result in blood poisoning. In case of pain and especially in case of obstructed urine flow, a doctor should definitely be consulted.
A particular danger is the so-called “Spanish collar”. This occurs when the foreskin gets caught on the rim of the glans when it is pulled back. This cuts off the blood flow. If this happens, immediate treatment is necessary.
The Treatment Of Foreskin Tightening
Contrary to the general opinion, circumcision is necessary only in case of complications. Otherwise, an initial attempt can be made to widen the foreskin with daily stretching exercises. Special ointments containing hormones or cortisone are used for this purpose, which protects the skin.
So if you notice that your son’s foreskin is a little tighter, stay calm for now. This is quite normal for babies and toddlers and usually takes care of itself in the long run.