There’s much debate about circumcision these days. While some some people opt out of having their infant son circumcised, others keep up the tradition, citing the need for their sons to “fit in” with his peers. The majority of boys in the United States are circumcised, usually within days of their birth. While culture or religion can play a role in whether or not a child is circumcised, there are a variety of reasons parents choose circumcision for their newborn sons.
While pediatricians usually support circumcision, it’s ultimately up to the parents to make this choice. At First Pediatric Care Center in Gastonia, North Carolina, pediatrician, Dr. Margaret Lubega supports parents whatever their decision. However, Dr. Lubega believes you should have all the facts, so that you can make an educated decision regarding circumcising your infant son.
Dr. Lubega and our staff are honored to partner with you in the healthy development of your child. We offer complete comprehensive pediatric services, including well-baby visits, vaccinations, and sports physicals, as well as in-office circumcisions.
What happens during circumcision
Circumcision is a surgical procedure that typically takes place before you and your child are released from the hospital. The skin that covers the tip of the penis, known as the foreskin, is removed in this procedure, which usually takes about 5-10 minutes. There are minimal, and rare, risks associated with the procedure, and the health benefits of circumcision far outweigh any of these risks.
The health benefits of circumcision
Circumcision promotes certain health benefits that your son will appreciate as he gets older. Besides the fact that circumcision makes it much easier for you (and in the future, him) to keep up good hygiene habits, there are ways circumcision reduces the risk for certain diseases and painful conditions.
Here’s a look at the top 5 benefits of circumcision for your son’s good health:
1.Decrease in urinary tract infections
Compared to their uncircumcised brethren, circumcised males have a much lower risk for developing urinary tract infections. Multiple urinary tract infections early in life can lead to serious kidney issues later on.
2.Reduction in the risk for some sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
Safe sex practices can’t be stressed strongly enough as the best way to guard against the transmission of HIV and STDs. That being noted, circumcised men have a lower risk of certain sexually transmitted diseases.
3.Prevention of phimosis
Some uncircumcised males develop a painful condition known as phimosis. This condition occurs when the uncircumcised foreskin becomes stiff and difficult to retract, causing inflammation of the penis.
4. Decreased risk of penile cancer
Penile cancer is rare, but it occurs far less often in circumcised men. In fact, many experts think being circumcised as an infant prevents this cancer, while adult circumcision doesn’t offer the same protection.
5. Protection against balanitis
One of the risks that comes with not being circumcised is balanitis. This painful infection occurs when bacteria become trapped in the foreskin. The infection causes irritation and swelling, discharge, and painful urination. Balanitis can lead to erectile dysfunction as well. Hygiene plays a key role in whether or not you develop balanitis.
Although it might be difficult to picture your tiny baby as a grown man, someday it will happen. And another health-related benefit to your son’s circumcision is protection from HPV for his future female sexual partners.
Circumcision, while a highly personal decision, can be a cornerstone in your son’s healthy foundation. To schedule your son’s circumcision or for any other pediatric concerns, please contact our office.