The question of whether circumcision is good or bad is a complex and subjective one with no definitive answer. While it is a proven fact that circumcision can significantly decrease the chances of a multitude of penile conditions and eliminate various foreskin-related problems, people still have varied opinions about the procedure. There are advantages and disadvantages of every surgical procedure and circumcision is no different.
In this blog, we will discuss not only if circumcision is good or bad but also its advantages and disadvantages to help you decide if it is the correct option for you.
Is circumcision a good option for you?
Circumcision is a commonly performed surgical procedure that involves the removal of the foreskin, a retractable fold of skin that covers the penis glans or the head of the penis.
There are various reasons for undergoing a circumcision. Circumcisions are commonly performed due to social, religious or cultural reasons. A person may also decide to get circumcised to align with their family tradition, personal beliefs or for strictly cosmetic reasons as well.
In some cases, it may also be recommended by your urologist as a permanent and effective treatment for various foreskin-related issues. If you struggle with any of the below-mentioned foreskin conditions, circumcision may be a good option for you:
- Phimosis: Phimosis is a condition of the penis that is characterized by a tight or narrowed foreskin that cannot be easily retracted over the head, or glans, of the penis. Phimosis is a relatively common condition in infants and young boys but can also affect older males.
- Paraphimosis: Paraphimosis is a medical condition in which the foreskin, once retracted, becomes trapped behind the glans and cannot be pulled back over it. The constriction of the foreskin behind the glans can lead to impaired blood flow resulting in swelling, pain, numbness and inflammation of the foreskin.
- Recurrent balanitis: Balanitis is a type of penile condition that is characterized by pain and inflammation on the glans or head of the penis. Circumcision is considered to be an effective and permanent treatment for balanitis. It is also to be noted that while balanitis can be treated with antibiotics, your urologist may recommend circumcision if it is recurrent.
Read More – Difference Between Phimosis and Paraphimosis
Advantages of circumcision
It is a proven fact that circumcision can be very beneficial not only for people struggling with penile and foreskin conditions but also for good maintenance of genital hygiene and general well-being. Some potential advantages that are often associated with circumcision are:
- Personal hygiene: One of the major benefits of undergoing circumcision is improved genital hygiene it provides. With the removal of the foreskin, it becomes easier to clean the penis and its glans. Circumcision also prevents the build-up of smegma, a natural substance that can accumulate under the foreskin.
- Decreased risk of Urinary Tract Infection: Often referred to as UTI, Urinary Tract Infection can occur in any part of the urinary system. UTI generally occurs due to poor genital hygiene and the accumulation of bacteria, microbes and smegma under the foreskin. As the foreskin is removed, it becomes easier to clean the penis glans and wash away any excess smegma or bacteria.
- Lower risk of Sexually Transmitted Infections: Studies show that circumcised men are less likely to contract any Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) such as herpes, HIV, HPV and Chlamydia as compared to uncircumcised men. It is to be noted, however, that the protection circumcision provides against STIs is modest. Consistent and proper use of protection during intercourse remains essential.
- Prevention or cure for foreskin-related issues: Circumcision is considered to be not only the most effective but also a permanent solution to all foreskin-related issues such as phimosis, paraphimosis or balanitis. Undergoing circumcision early in life can also prevent future foreskin-related issues.
- Reduced risk of penile cancer: Studies have shown that infant male circumcision significantly reduces the risk of penile cancer. However, as a person continues to age, the correlation between circumcision and penile cancer continues to decrease. Circumcision in adulthood seems to make no difference to a man’s risk of developing penile cancer.
Read More – Advantages of Male Circumcision to a Woman
Disadvantages of circumcision
As is the case with any other surgical procedure, circumcision also has its own set of potential disadvantages. Some of the most common disadvantages that are often associated with circumcision include:
- Risks and complications from surgery: While cases of complications either during or after circumcision are extremely rare, they can still happen and should not be taken lightly. Some of the most common complications that can occur after a circumcision include excessive bleeding, infection, injury to the penis, unsatisfactory cosmetic results etc.
- Potential impact on sexual pleasure: Decreased sensitivity of the penis glans is one of the most discussed potential disadvantages of circumcision. When the foreskin is removed, the penis glans is exposed to constant friction, which may result in the reduction of sensitivity over time and may affect sexual pleasure as well.
- Higher chance of meatitis: Meatitis or redness and irritation of the penis opening is a commonly discussed complication that can occur in circumcised men. In the case of meatitis, you may notice a sore or scab on the penis glans resulting in painful urination and intercourse.
Read More – Different Types of Circumcision
As mentioned before, the decision to undergo circumcision is a personal and complex one. Often, people have no other choice other than to get circumcised due to their strong religious or cultural beliefs.
Whereas in other cases, it can be a case of medical necessity and maintaining good personal hygiene.
There is no definitive answer to the question of whether circumcision is good or bad and depending on the circumstances, it may or may not be a good option for you.
Even then, however, it is always advisable to consult a healthcare professional before making any decisions and have a complete understanding of circumcision and if it is the right choice for you.