...yikes (Diabetes Questions, plus the usual ones)
July 10 2009 at 9:36 PM
Dave (no login)
So. It's been a hectic day. The basics:
Grew up being able to retract the foreskin, but lost the ability around puberty. Also got Diabetes (type I) at the same time. Kinda thought it was just part of growing up that I couldn't retract it, but apparently, uncirc'd diabetics can often get this?
Didn't really think much about it. Had a few sexual partners, and no one ever commented on it. Sex was never painful, but the foreskin never (to my knowledge) ever pulled back. Most of the time, I used a condom (except twice, and those were very bad choices on my part, and I guess I got lucky I didn't catch anything!). Last five years, I was in a relationship with a woman where I had to use a condom (due to a medical condition of hers that prevented the use of birth control).
Well, that relationship ended around January of this year. Fairly recently, I started seeing this new girl, and our first time having sex, she instantly pulled back the foreskin, which hurt a touch. But it was kinda neat, in that sex felt different (not better or worse, just different), though it was a touch painful. (on the plus side, I lasted a lot longer than usual!). Anyways, we talked about this a bit later. But I didn't go into depth, because I was embarrassed.
Anyways, I did some reading today online, and found out exactly what it is that is going on. Until today, I didn't even KNOW that the foreskin was supposed to retract (because I always used a condom, I guess).
So, some questions (because I've been looking for hours, on this site and others, and I'm getting confused at times)
1) As a diabetic, this was probably caused by an infection. Will the usual "stretching" help?
2) The "two finger" method of stretching is just barely doable. And it makes me nervous doing it, but I suppose I'll manage. (I guess that's not really a question?)
3) Do I need to be applying steroid cream while stretching? Or can just normal stretching help?
4) Exactly how do you diagnose your frenulum length? What exactly is that all about? I feel like a total idiot for not knowing.
5) Until I get this all settled out, what should my sexual options be? For what it's worth, I only see this girl about once a month, because we live on other sides of the province (oh, Canada!). At least until January of '10.
6) I've always felt I had a problem with premature ejaculation. Or at least, I felt I had a problem, but women never really complained. I started doing "Kegel" exercises a few months ago to help. And they seem to have now with this new girl (who pulls back my foreskin - although it seems to pull back at least a bit on it's own when i don't use a condom). Does sex with an unretracted foreskin contribute to premature ejaculation?
Thanks a lot for the answers. Hope I'm not too much of a burden.
Dave (no login)
July 10 2009, 9:57 PM
...and, I'm 26. Relating to the Diabetes, it is under control, but hasn't always been. Have no problem pulling out the foreskin (can comfortably do maybe five cm?). But pulling open the band with two fingers is hard. And I can't pull back the foreskin even when flaccid (the opening is never more than a cm or so in diameter).
Man, that's a lot of questions. So tell us, how did the girl get the skin back if you never did? If you're having problems getting two fingers inside, how did the skin go back over the glans?
Steroid cream is not necessary to make these techniques work. You might wish to consider the use of a yeast control agent however, even though you didn't mention any symptons of yeast. I'm concerns that retraction was no problem early in life but became one with the onset of diabetes. The diabetes itself doesn't have an effect upon retraction, but indirectly a yeast infection could be induced by the excretion of sugar.
Any assessment of the frenulum would require full retraction of the foreskin.
You'll have to determine your own sexual options. You seem to be performing quite well, so I'm not sure what the doubt is about. What do you consider premature? It seems to me that if the glans is fully covered, an orgasm would be delayed, but it depends upon how you think about it. I believe most problems with premature ejaculation stem from psychological problems.
If this were a burden, we wouldn't be here.
Dave (no login)
July 10 2009, 11:21 PM
Thanks for the fast reply!
As for how the girl did it, I have no idea. I think maybe it's because I'm a bit of a wuss, and she was just quick and to the point about it. Also, I think it just might not be stretchy when I check (being as I'm not hard). It did go tightly over the glans, though - the glans was definitely swelling a bit, and I had a hard time getting the foreskin to go back over it afterwards.
I'll be definitely doing these exercises once a day, in the evening, with my other "more normal" exercises (the usual jog, pushups, situps, and weights routine). And I'm a bit concerned about the diabetes thing, myself. I'll probably contact a urologist or something.
As for what I'd consider "premature", I dunno. You're probably right - it's most likely a psychological thing. But it was always a worry of mine.
Anyways, thanks for the reply. I'll definitely be keeping an eye on this site!
The word urologist---what do you mean by that? Why would you wish to contact one, for they really don't get involved with diabetes. You said the diabetes is under control. Is there more to the story? BTW, your physical activity is one of the best things you can do in your condition. Keep active.
Yes, this is one of the nasty consequences of diabetes.
Unless your diabetes control is exceptional, and particularly with type 1 diabetes, there are going to be times when your BSL "peaks" and exceeds the capacity of the kidneys to retrieve all the glucose from the urine as they normally do, so you will tend to have a little sugar in the urine. I gather that something similar occurs with sweating and the secretions of other skin glands. The result is that under the foreskin, there will be some available sugar which favours the growth of Candida species, commonly referred to as "Thrush".
This may not be grossly evident, but the yeast does to some extent attempt to penetrate the skin and set up an inflammatory response, causing the skin to toughen (a low-grade form of scarring) and contract. In most areas this is not critical, but the foreskin is both a flexural area where sugar build-up can occur most easily and thus favour the yeast, and a structure which unless frequently retracted, is not subject to regular stretching as you move about throughout the day.
In the case you describe, you will need to treat the potential, low-grade yeast infestation in order to facilitate stretching. In fact, you probably want to start using one of the antifungals as previously described (a fellow has recently mentioned Nystatin which is an older but quite effective and very safe medication) in advance by a week or two of stretching and continue it at least until the problem is fully solved.
Actually, I think you will find the "two finger" method, the most satisfying as it is the most direct method of applying the necessary stretch.
Since the problem is "secondary" - that is, you used to be able to retract but then could not, some degree of scarring is implied and a steroid would be most useful. By definition in your situation, you must use a fungal suppressant with the steroid, the Triamcinolone/ Nystatin combination a fellow mentions in a recent thread sounds excellent if you could obtain that. However, if you successfully suppress the fungal/ yeast influence, stretching alone will eventually be effective.
As you will note from those frequent previous references, you are likely to have a tight frænulum and should be attempting to stretch this in addition to whatever else you do. If however, you have had your young lady retract your foreskin, have enjoyed intercourse in this fashion and have found so little to complain about her doing so, it can hardly seem to be a major matter.
That's how you "diagnose" the length. It either works or it doesn't. It's either "adequate" or too short.
Is there a problem at the moment? Are you not saying that she pulls your foreskin back, pops on a condom (or not) and you have intercourse? It's a little snug, but it works? You tell us - which part is the problem?
"Premature ejaculation" is a most fascinating animal. I've discussed it before (which addresses the "women never really complained" phenomenon), and the matter of expectations is certainly a major aspect. Oh, and of course, pain of any significant degree does tend to "slow you down" also.
As to how, or whether having a glans which is always covered, affects how quickly you will ejaculate, there are a variety of factors. A tight foreskin may actually provide more pressure on the glans (where pressure is pleasant, but actual friction mostly unpleasant) and the foreskin itself being quite (sexually) sensitive, may give more pleasant sensations sandwiched between the glans and whatever it impacts, than when it is stretched out over the shaft.
OK, so we do enjoy the discourse here. Why? Because we understand that the problems - all sorts of things and not just "phimosis" - that are discussed here are very real, very poorly understood by people in general and people (notably and sadly, doctors and presumably, teachers) who should know much about them, are "taboo" to many people and so can often be better addressed through the anonymity of this medium.
And yes, we really do get a "kick" out of knowing we are actually making life substantially more pleasant for people and not insignificantly, fostering the relationships which are so important to people. As I figure it, if you have problems with your sexual relationship, it impedes your ability to feel the unity which this relationship is designed to invoke.
Dave (no login)
Re: Take a rest every hour or so.
July 11 2009, 1:35 PM
First, Jim - I want to see a doctor dedicated to this subject. My diabetes doctor HAS seen my penis, and never said anything about this subject before. ABout the only time it comes up is when he asks me "can you still maintain an erection?". Which is, I should say, a very terrifying question when someone asks you twice a year!
My Diabetes was not ALWAYS under control, especially as a teenager. I'm not sure, but I think my foreskin has gotten tighter over the years because of this. On a sort of side note, I decided to compare something. My ex girlfriend and I, about two years ago, decided to "have some fun" and made a rubber cast of my erect penis (it's a dildo making kit? Whatever, it was fun). Anyways, I still have it, tucked away hidden in a drawer, and I compared this morning. They're pretty much the same, so the foreskin hasn't really gotten worse in two years. Which would make sense.
Anyways, seeing a urologist will help solidify matters a bit, I think. Mind you, I'm not gonna jump into any surgeries or something silly like that!
and Paul- I've printed out what you've said, and put it with my other "exercise" notes. It's very reassuring!
Plus, I talked to the girlfriend about it, and we're going to try having sex without pulling the foreskin back at all, no condom (we're exclusive, and both tested) to see what happens - if there's any pain or tightness in the foreskin. Also, she was really reassuring - even though she hadn't heard about this before (she did have a former boyfriend who had it, but I guess he didn't know what it was either?)
Anyways. Thanks guys for all the reassuring words. I feel a helluva lot better about this than I did yesterday, that's for sure!
Have a great day, and all that jazz. I'm gonna buy me one of these anti-fungals and some steroid cream (cortisone?) and add it to my regimen.
I still don't get why you would need to see a doctor about your penis.
What is your present age and how long have you been living with diabetes?
Dave (no login)
Re: Good idea about the medicine
July 11 2009, 10:54 PM
Mostly I want to see a doctor who knows the specifics about Diabetes and this condition. Hence, the urologist. I've generally found that Diabetes messes everything up, and speaking to them helps. Granted, I won't be able to see one for some time, so if these techniques work (and I imagine they will), I might be able to put that off. Plus, sometimes Diabetes makes normal medicines not work very well. Little things like that.
As for age, I am 26 next month. I have had Diabetes for 13 years (got diagnosed on my birthday). It has been pretty well under control for the last two years.
The urologist is not the doctor to see about any aspect of diabetes unless you develop some kind of disease related to the genital-urinary tract. A tight foreskin to a urologist is an excuse for circumcision. That's it.
If you have a good doctor monitoring your blood sugar levels and your intake of insulin, that's the man to listen to. The foreskin issue can be related to the blood sugar by way of feeding the yeast, but beyond that, it has no influence which would cause the foreskin to be tight.
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