Just to confirm, only DS should ever retract, right? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 01-23-2011, 08:32 PM - Thread Starter
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I feel like I know the answer, but I just need to confirm here.  DS is due for his 4-year dr's visit in a few months, and when we went to his 3-year dr's visit, the ped said that now that he was 3, we need to start gently retracting his foreskin.  I'm pretty sure she's wrong, so I want to arm myself with what to say when she mentions it again, or even tries to retract him a bit herself.  I'd just rather she didn't touch his penis at all - how do I say that?  When she mentioned it last year, I said that my understanding was that we just let him retract it himself, and she said oh no, you have to start helping him to do it, in the bath and stuff, and she gently tried to pull his foreskin back a bit - I was so caught off guard I didn't know what to do/say, but I had my hand hovering right over hers in case she started going too far.  Thankfully, she didn't do much and then moved on.


So anyways, can someone please make sure I'm doing the right thing.  Every now and then during bathtime, I casually ask DS if he can pull the skin on his penis back, as I figure he won't hurt himself.  That's all I need to do, right?  Or not even that?



Loving mommy to DS, born April 2007.  Trying for baby #2 since December 2008. 
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#2 of 4 Old 01-23-2011, 09:03 PM
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You are right only the owner of the penis should ever retract. Asking him to do so in the bath is great and gets hm in the habit. Though if he dosnt want to it isnt a big deal. I dont have ds do it yet and he is 6y last time I asked him if he wanted to he didnt understand what I meant and I wasnt about to show him.

What I told the Dr. after 2 retraction incidents was "Because of past experiences I do not want you to touch his penis( I didnt say foreskin though you could) I agree to the testicle exam but that is all" I didnt use the words retract because that is to easy for them to interpreted as full retraction.

I no longer allow them to check ds's genitals now because he dosnt want it done hasnt since he was your ds's age. So give your ds the option of allowing it or not if he is able that is.

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#3 of 4 Old 01-24-2011, 08:00 AM
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You're correct.  You shouldn't be messing with it.


At 4yo, they don't usually look at the penis anymore.  No more diaper rash to worry about, and condescended testicles would have been dealt with earlier, so underwear just usually stays on.


If she brings it up, ask her "why?"  Ask her if she has any literature about it.  This should help her think it over herself and figure out that it isn't a good idea.  If she asks you why you don't think you should retract, you can mention: pain, risk of infection, risk of paraphimosis, and build up of scar tissue leading to phimosis.  Mention that the end of the foreskin is a sphincter, and that your DS needs to relax it himself to retract safely and comfortably and that you pulling on it would lead to it closing tightly.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
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#4 of 4 Old 01-24-2011, 11:53 AM
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My sons doc tried to tell me the SAME b.s. at his 4 year wcc.

Mindie, wife to Mark, not-so-crunchy mom to Dylan (4/04); Devon (6/06); Dorothy (9/07); Derek (12/19/09); Daniel (12/18/10); Newbie D (2/22/12)

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