Alright alright, so we'll hold our hands up and say that here at Sugarscape, we do tend to focus on all things boobs and the vagina life - but we also know that guys have just as many worries about their bodies as girls do.
So today it's time to talk about PENISES, hooray. The chances are that, if you're a dude, you've had a few worries over the years about the way things work down there. Is it alright to be a bit wonky? How come it does that thing when you're weeing? WHY WON'T IT DO WHAT YOU WANT IT TO DO?
Well you can stop right now with all the stressing, 'cos we're here to talk about all the things you think are weird about your willy, that definitely aren't weird at all. Lovely jubbly.
1. It drips a bit
Oooh nice. Just like a hose spills a few drops when it's been turned off, your own personal hose probably does the same thing. The sphincter muscle that pinches the urethra closed is about 8 inches from the tip of your penis, so a bit of pee is always trapped in front of it. A press behind your scrotum can help you avoid dotting your trousers if you're bothered, or you can use a technique called urethral milking. Simply run your finger along the underside of your penis to force out what's left, and you can reduce post-wee dribble by nearly 30%. YAY.
2. There's a slight twist going on
SCIENCE TIME. Your body is made from two halves stuck together (the seam inside your mouth and under the scrotum are proof), and the two sides develop at slightly different rates when you're in the womb. The one left over tell-tale sign is a slight twist in your penis aka penile torsion, and almost 100% of guys have it meaning you've got absolutely nothing to worry about. Fun fact: Penises always twist counter-clockwise and no one knows why. So there you go.
3. It leaks slightly during foreplay
Yep, also totally normal. When you're aroused, your Cowper's glands (located at the base of your penis dontcha know) produce a liquid that lubricates and de-acidifies your urethra so semen can blast their way through and do their thang. The longer you stay erect for, the more of this 'preejaculate' stuff your body makes. FYI, it also contains semen which is why the pull-out method of contraception is pretty much the worst idea ever. Duh.
4. You can't do a wee in public
Better known as stage fright and uh huh, up to one in 10 men suffer from it (the fancy name is paruresis). Girls get it too, 'cos when you're nervous, the muscles that control urination involuntarily tighten and kinda kill your flow. Finding a stall and doing the job behind a locked door is usually easier as there's more privacy, but if there's none available, just take a deep breath and contract your pelvic muscles, then relax and exhale. That trickle should come in no time.
5. When you do pee, it goes in the wrong direction
Aiming straight but pissing left? You're not alone, pal. Thanks to the teeny tiny opening at the tip of your penis, urine spirals out of your urethra SUPER FAST, and if there's dried mucus, ejaculate, or any other irregularity on there, it can make the stream go off course. It's most likely to happen in the morning or after sex, but if this happens often or mega dramatically, it might be worth seeing a urologist to check your urethra is alright.
6. Erm, it's various shades of pink/blue/purple
Oooh a rainbow. The skin on the head of your penis is thinner than the rest, so it's totally normal for it to change colour in response to the amount of blood flowing to it. For example, a Caucasian guy will probably have a red penis when he's aroused 'cos there's more blood going to it, and a purpley one when he's not aroused 'cos there's less. Having said that, BRIGHT red is not a good sign - particularly if it's also itchy or painful - so you might wanna get that checked out for infection or allergy.
7. It gets hard for literally no reason wtf
Not ideal, but unwanted erections will often occur when you become sexually aroused subconsciously, so there ain't much you can do about it. For example, if you smell someone wearing the same scent as your significant other, things might happen. Vibrations can also spur erections, so that explains the bus. All you can do is wait it out. Never force an erection down as that can cause penile fractures (agh), and surprise erections are pretty rare after the age of around 30, so you don't have to wait too long 'til it's a thing of the past.
8. There's a curve going on when you have an erection
Hardly ANY guys have a 100% kink-free, one direction, super straight kinda equipment. Some degree of curvature — even a complete banana curve — is normal, especially if it's always been that way. However, if your curve is severe or if it means that sex is painful, you're among the 2% of men who have Peyronie's disease. It's caused by tiny patches of scar tissue which come about through erection-bending moments like missed thrusts or keeping a boner down, and even one traumatic injury can cause it. The scar tissue doesn't expand and instead stays tight, which is what causes the curve. A urologist can prescribe drugs or surgery to straighten things out a bit if it bothers you.
9. It refuses to co-operate when you've been drinking
What the kids call whisky dick. Basically, too much alcohol can make it much harder for you to get an erection, keep an erection, or ejaculate. If you want to get scientific, it's most likely because alcohol acts as a depressant that dulls your senses - and yep, that includes your penile senses). So if you do plan on using your penis later for a good time, set yourself a vague limit early on in the evening and do everyone a favour.
10. You've spotted some blood in your semen
This one's pretty likely to make you freak out because doctors always say that blood is never a good sign, but most of the time, blood in your semen has a benign cause. It's called hematospermia or hemospermia, and could be a one-time thing or a persistent problem. It will usually go away on it's own, but if it doesn't then you should definitely get it checked out by a doctor in case of inflammation or infection, stones in the ejaculatory ducts, or a whole list of other medical things.
11. You ejaculate too quickly
Premature ejaculation (PE) is usually defined as having an orgasm within one minute of penetration, and then feeling distressed, annoyed or anxious about it afterwards. There's nothing biologically wrong with people with PE and there's often a psychological element to it, but there is loads of options for treatment if it's affecting your mental health. Counselling, medications and desensitising sprays or wipes are all available, but only worry about it if it's bothering you or your partner. It's no biggie if not.
12. Things down thurrr are itchy
Obviously the odd itchy moment is completely normal (especially if you trim/shave/wax around there) but if it's more persistent then there could be an issue. Tinia cruris is a fungal infection on your groin or genitals that can be caused by heat, sweat, and skin rubbing together, so wearing breathable fabrics and loose clothing can help. Make sure to also wash and dry your genitals properly to prevent it, but if it's already raging then there are anti-fungal creams that can help, either over the counter or prescription. Yeast infections are also a possibility, so if you have a reddish rash or any itching or burning, check it out with your doctor.
13. There's some weird bumpy things.
If you're shaving or waxing your pubes then they could just be ingrown hairs which are easy to get rid of, but genital warts, syphilis and genital herpes are also potential answers which NEED to be treated properly before you go getting cosy with anyone else. It's also worth mentioning however that LOADS of guys have little bumps on the skin, some of which are like little hair follicles where no hair is actually there, and some are actually tiny sebaceous cysts. The chances are you probably don't need to worry, but make sure you know what you're looking at.