Asking most men about their frenulum is likely to net nothing more than a blank stare; although this tiny band of flesh may well be the most sensitive part of the male anatomy, guys may not even be especially aware of its existence, unless something goes wrong, resulting in foreskin pain and/or bleeding. In most cases, injury to this delicate tissue is the result of a condition called frenulum breve, which translates literally as “short bowstring.”
Fortunately, this problem can be corrected fairly easily by a urologist who is familiar with the condition. After the procedure, the right approach penis care can speed healing and help to restore pleasurable sensation.
What is the frenulum, exactly?
Underneath the foreskin is a thin band of skin that joins the foreskin to the glans; it is analogous to the connective tissue underneath the tongue. This band of tissue is known as the frenulum, although men are more likely to be familiar with the term “banjo string” in referring to this part of the male anatomy.
How to tell if the frenulum is too short
Most men do not even notice the frenulum, although it is responsible for a large part of the pleasurable sensation they feel during sex. However, men who have a shorter-than-normal frenulum may experience the following problems:
- Inability to retract the foreskin fully or a foreskin that immediately rolls back over the glans when retracted.
- Pain during masturbation or intercourse.
- Tearing of the frenulum, especially during intercourse.
Many men first become aware that they have frenulum breve when they have sex for the first time and experience pain on penetration. Although pain may occur during masturbation, many men automatically adjust their technique so that the area is not affected. However, during penetration, the foreskin may be pulled back completely, resulting in pain or even causing the frenulum to snap.
When this occurs, it is not unusual for guys to wait for the torn tissue to heal on its own; however, this is not necessarily a good idea, as scar tissue can form that is more prone to tearing than the original tissue, leading to a greater risk of tearing in the future.
Treating frenulum breve
In the past, full circumcision has been the recommended procedure for correcting frenulum breve. However, a minor procedure known as frenuloplasty, where the frenulum is cut and an extra flap of skin is added, has grown in popularity and generally has good results. Most men who undergo frenuloplasty experience full recovery, and the pain related to intercourse is replaced by pleasure, with no worry of snapping or tearing the connective tissue.
In most cases, scarring from the surgery is minor and not noticeable by anyone except the owner of the penis; scarring can be minimized by applying a cream containing vitamins E and A after the sutures and incision have healed.
Caring for the penis post-op
Following frenuloplasty, most men are able to return to their normal activities, aside from taking a break from sexual activity while the affected tissue heals. Men should follow the instructions of their surgeon carefully in terms of cleaning the area and changing the bandages, as well as allowing plenty of time for healing before jumping back into action. Using a penis health formula (most health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil) containing vitamins A, C, and E, which have powerful skin healing and tissue-building properties, can help to keep the penile skin smooth and supple and promote the formation of healthy new tissue. In addition, moisturizers such as shea butter are a natural way to keep the foreskin soft and responsive and to help prevent the minor tears and cracks that often occur as the skin stretches over the head of the penis.
For additional information on most common penis health issues, tips on improving penis sensitivity, and what to do to maintain a healthy penis, visit: http://www.penishealth101.com. John Dugan is a professional writer who specializes in men's health issues and is an ongoing contributing writer to numerous online web sites.