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5 Things Men Should Know About Their Penis

Man looking down in surprise

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In this Article:

  • Cleaning daily can help prevent infections such as jock itch.
  • Checking yourself regularly will help you catch any possible health problems.
  • Getting tested regularly and talking with your partners will help prevent STDs.

Your sexual health is just as important as your physical and emotional health. Keeping your parts down below in good health can make you feel more confident and help you have a healthy sex life. Here are five things that you should know about your penis.

1. You Should Clean Down There Daily

It may sound gross, but your penis skin can be a warm habitat for bacteria. Doctors recommend cleaning your penis daily to decrease your chances of getting an infection like jock itch (caused by the same fungus as athlete’s foot). This includes washing your penis using a mild soap when you shower and wiping it off every time you use the bathroom or after you have sex.

2. One Testicle May Be Larger Than the Other

It is normal for testicles to change size over time and common for one to be larger than the other. One testicle may hang lower than the other, too. You should check your testicles regularly. If you notice anything strange or something doesn’t feel right, you should see a medical health professional.

3. Erectile Problems Could Point To Other Health Issues

Your penis is rich in nerves and blood vessels, which help give you erections. If you are having trouble getting it up, that could mean you have underlying heart, blood sugar (diabetes), or urinary issues. If you are having problems getting or keeping an erection, share your concerns with your Medical Readiness NCO or health professional sooner than later.

Smoking can also increase the chances of having erectile problems. Check out four ways you can kick tobacco to the curb.

4. Masturbation Is Perfectly Healthy

Massaging your penis—known as masturbation—on a regular basis isn’t harmful to your health. Some experts say it can even be good for your prostate, relieve stress, clear your head, or relax you so you can sleep. Make sure not to be too rough, though, because you don’t want to break your penis (yes that really can happen).

To guard your penis from skin irritation, consider using a lubricant if you choose to masturbate. Using coconut oil or olive oil (rather than over-the-counter lubricants) on your penis is safe. Be careful though – if you’re planning to have sex using a condom, these oils can break down the latex.

5. STDs Are More Common Than You Think

Did you know half of the U.S. population will get a sexually transmitted disease (STD) in their lifetime? In some cases, you may have an STD and not even know it. You should get tested regularly and always talk with your sexual partners before you hop into bed together. 

Learn more about your male parts from the American Sexual Health Association.

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