Article By Terri-Ann Williams
~ September 2021 ~ DESPITE the fact that most people are at it, sex is still a taboo topic.
This means that many of us can shy away from asking our partners, friends and even doctors about things we are embarrassed or confused about.
We can all get a little bit shy about what goes on beneath the sheets.
Embarrassing things happen to everyone – but most of the time what you think is strange could be completely normal.
With sex myths buzzing around all over the place it’s hard to know what to believe.
We asked the experts to answer some of the most embarrassing male sex questions, so you don’t have to worry about getting red-faced in front of your GP.
1. Is it normal to feel something in my testicles or scrotum?
Doctor and co-founder of sexual wellness brand Hanx, Dr Sarah Welsh said that yes, it is normal to feel something in your testicles or scrotum.
Speaking to The Sun she said: “Lumps and bumps in the testicles are fairly common and are not usually caused by anything serious.
“That being said, it’s important to get them looked at by your GP to rule out anything serious such as testicular cancer.
“Look at Balls to Cancer for advice on how to check your balls for anything out of the usual.”
2. Can a man break his penis?
Dr Sarah said that while people might make jokes about ‘boners’ the penis doesn’t actually contain any bones.
However, she said, an erect penis can suffer a “break”. Dr Sarah explained: “Typically, a loud cracking noise is heard, it’s very painful, and the erection is lost immediately.
“If this happens to you, it’s important to seek medical attention straight away, as you may require surgical intervention to repair the tissues.”
3. What does normal semen look like?
If you’re concerned about the colour of your semen, then Dr Sarah is here to put your mind at ease.
“Healthy semen is cloudy white or grey in colour”, she explained.
“It is slightly runny, with a jelly-like consistency, and often is described as smelling a little like ammonia or bleach (due to the alkaline pH)”, Dr Sarah added.
4. I’m young and can’t get it up, is that normal?
Erectile dysfunction is more common with increasing age; however, due to stigma and silence around the issue, many people don’t realise that it can also affect young men, Dr Sarah said.
“If you’re feeling alone, remember that it’s more common that you think: the app and better sex champions Mojo found that 30 per cent of men by the age of 30 experience problems getting hard and staying hard.
“There are many different causes, but also many ways to manage it, so be sure to speak your GP and seek support.”
What is erectile dysfunction?
It was previously reported that there had been a surge in men suffering from erectile dysfunction due to the Covid pandemic.
But what is erectile dysfunction and what can you do to fix it?
Dr Sara Kayat, Superdrug Ambassador, highlighted that ED is actually a common condition and affects up to one in five men in the UK.
She explained: “Its effects are not just physical, but can also play a role in poor self-esteem, confidence, and depression.”
The research found more than half of people said ED reduces their desire to touch each other, and 68 per cent report that anxious thoughts could influence their partner’s self esteem.
Dr Sara added that it’s important to both seek help and look into the underlying cause of ED.
She added: “Reassuringly, there are many effective treatments for ED, and successful treatment can have a significantly positive effect on the quality of life.”
Photo by Dainis Graveris from Pexels
If you want to get help, experts say there are things you can try to combat ED.
Here are the things you can look into:
- Penis pump
- Talk to your partner
5. My penis has acne, should I be concerned?
Most people will have experienced a little bit of acne during their lifetime – especially during our teenage years.
It can be distressing enough to have pimples on your face, but even more so to have them down below.
Dr Sarah said that if you have acne on your penis – it’s usually harmless.
She added: “Acne can occur on the penis, and as with the skin on other parts of the body, it’s usually harmless.
“However, little spots or pimples may also be a sign of a sexually transmitted infection (STI), so if you’re unsure whether it is acne or something else, see a health professional to get checked.”
6. Can I give my partner a UTI?
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are more common in women but can still happen in men.
Dr Sarah explained that unlike STIs, UTIs are not contagious – so you cannot pass them on to your partner.
She added: “It’s worth remembering that sex whilst you have a UTI can be uncomfortable, or painful.”
7. I have no sex drive, what’s the problem?
There are many reasons why we might not be feeling like having sex and Dr Sarah says that it doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you.
She explained: “Libido (sex drive) is something that changes from day to day and throughout life, as well as from person to person.
“Libido is different for everyone, but if your finding your libido affects you or your relationship then it’s a good idea to reach out for support, as there are ways to manage it.
“Loss of libido is common and affects many people at some point in life.”
“There are many causes of reduced libido including stress, relationship issues and tiredness.
“However, it may also be a sign of an underlying medical issue, so it’s worth getting checked by your doctor”, she added.
8. What is a normal penis size? Is mine too small?
The NHS says that this is something that many men worry about and that there are no average length figures for teenagers because people grow at different rates.
Official guidance states: “Most men’s penises are somewhere around 9cm (3.75in) long when not erect, but it’s normal for them to be shorter or longer than this. Some things can make your penis temporarily smaller, such as swimming or being cold.
“Research has found the average erect penis size varies from around 13cm to 18cm (5in to 7in).
You cannot make your penis larger or smaller with exercises or medication.”
9. Should I be circumcised?
Dr. Jamin Brahmbhatt said the procedure isn’t always necessary for a healthy happy life.
He explained: “The overall risk of urinary tract infections in males is low, but these infections are more common in uncircumcised males.
“Severe infections early in life can lead to kidney problems later on.
“Circumcised men might have a lower risk of certain sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. Still, safe sexual practices remain essential”, he added.
So really – it comes down to personal choice.
10. My penis curves, is that ok?
Curvatures up to 30 degrees aren’t thought to cause any issues.
The condition is called Peyronie disease and it happens when scar tissue is formed in the penis.
If you are concerned about the curvature in your penis you should see a GP as it can cause issues such as painful erections and reduced flexibility.