Everything to Know About Micropenises
What a Micropenis Is and How It Affects Your Sex Life
The prominent role that penis size plays in the male imagination is ironic in a kind of tragic way.
We often associate penises (and their size, specifically) with manliness. We even go as far to use the term “manhood” even though nothing could be further from the truth. In theory, manliness should be about the size of your character, not your genitals, and about the impact of your actions, not the impact of, well, your genitals.
The notion that a man with a small penis is someone to be pitied, dismissed and derided is still a hard cultural association to shake, both for men with large or normal-sized penises and their smaller penis-wielding peers. And if having a small penis is such a difficult psychological burden, you can imagine how particularly difficult it must be for those with micropenises.
What exactly is a micropenis, you ask?
We spoke to a medical doctor, a sexual health expert and a sex writer to help understand what micropenises are, what causes them and what you can do about (and with) them.
1. What Is a Micropenis?
Given the name, you might imagine a penis so small that you’d need a microscope to see it. However, that’s not exactly the case.
“Basically, this is a penis that is 2.5 standard deviations smaller than an average penis size,” says Dr. Stanton Honig, M.D., a Yale Medicine urologist and director of male urology. “The average penile length (stretched) is 13.3 cm [roughly 5.25 inches]. So a micropenis would be 9.3 cm [roughly 3.66 inches] or less.”
2. How Common Are Micropenises?
Though a micropenis itself isn’t necessarily microscopic in size, the percentage of the population with one is pretty minuscule — it affects well under 1 percent.
“Micropenis is a very rare condition found in less than 0.6 percent of the population,” says Danny Garrett, sexual health expert for TheEnhancedMale.com. “With roughly 7.5 billion humans on Earth and and a little over 50 percent having a penis, that equates to around 22 million micropenises worldwide. This number has been even as low as 0.015 percent in the United States, which is 1.5 micropenises in every 10,000 births of boys.”
Still, that would imply literally hundreds of thousands of Americans have micropenises. “That’s a lot of men with a micropenis, and those numbers do not include transgender and nonbinary people who have penises, says Daire Faust of SmutGeek.com.
If you have a micropenis and are feeling alone, know that you’re far from the only person in this situation.
3. What Causes a Micropenis?
If some aspect of your body seems a bit outside the norm, you might worry that it’s somehow your fault.
However, that’s usually not the case. When it comes to micropenises (and penis size in general), there’s absolutely no link between your actions and your genitalia because the conditions for a micropenis are set up in the womb — so no, it wasn’t as a result of you eating the wrong foods, not working out enough or masturbating too much.
“The most common cause of micropenis is fetal testosterone deficiency, which is caused by hypogonadotropic hypogonadism,” says Garrett. “This happens when the hypothalamus does not secrete the hormones that stimulate the testicles to produce testosterone necessary for normal growth and development.”
While this could just be a genetic anomaly with no real cause, it could also be caused by exposure to certain harmful substances while you were in utero.
“Several cases of micropenis have been found alongside other birth abnormalities when the mother is exposed to pesticides or other toxic chemicals during pregnancy,” he adds.
In short, no, it’s not your fault and if you were stressing out about that, you can breathe a sigh of relief.
4. Can You Make a Micropenis Bigger?
Micropenis or not, the question on the lips of just about every guy worried about his penis size is, “Can I make it bigger somehow?” Of course, it’s not a question with a very straightforward answer.
If you’re an adult, most likely you’re already out of luck. “Typically no,” says Honig, you can’t increase the size of your micropenis. However, he adds, it’s a condition that has the potential to be rectified early on in a child’s development. “If you are an infant, topical treatments are available. Sometimes, if it is from a fixable genetic or hormonal defect, it can be reversed (as an infant), too.”
If you’re reading this now, chances are you’ve grown past infant stage. So what can you do?
“If hormone replacement therapy does not work, then some doctors may suggest surgery to place an implant into the penis,” notes Garret.
That being said, there’s at least some evidence that penis extension surgery doesn’t work. It’s also likely to be expensive, and there’s a certain amount of risk associated with undergoing any surgical procedure. At this point, you might be wondering…
5. How Does a Micropenis Affect Your Sex Life?
You never know how someone will react to your private parts the first time they see them, but if you have a micropenis, there’s a good chance you’ll feel even more nervous about revealing that fact to a potential partner.
For starters, let’s point out that having a micropenis is not an indication that it’ll function any differently than any other penis out there.
“Most men with a small penis can function completely fine,” says Honig. “They typically have no problems with erections, orgasms, etc. Therefore, there really should not be any particular discussions unless it is affecting function with a couple.”
Being in a relationship with someone who finds zero issue with you having a micropenis may seem like a tall order, but aren’t relationships supposed to be about caring for the other person as a whole, not just the size of their body parts?
While it’s true that some people might scoff at the idea of dating or hooking up with someone with a micropenis, that’s their loss. Frankly, they’re saving you the trouble of getting involved with someone who’s shallow and judgmental.
“I have been in BDSM relationships with people with a micropenis, but alternative lifestyle or not, it is important to remember that sex is not defined solely by the penis penetrating an orifice,” says Faust. “Pleasure and orgasm can be had in so many other ways. Anyone who takes the time to learn these ways (what turns them on and gets them off, as well as taking the time to learn what their partner enjoys) puts them way ahead of the average person having sex. Remembering this and being open to playing with and experimenting with what gives pleasure gives hard truth to the saying that size doesn’t matter.”
A micropenis is not something to be embarrassed, and even if you’re hesitant, Garrett suggests being clear about it beforehand with a potential partner as the better move.
“By discussing in an open conversation, you will remove any shock value that they may have from finding out during intimacy,” he says. “Hiding the issue will not make it go away. Honesty is the best policy here, and it gives you the opportunity to hone other skills which may be equally as pleasurable to your partner as using a penis.”
You can drive someone wild with pleasure without having a large penis — or a penis at all — if you have personal chemistry, and you know how to get them off with your hands, your mouth and assorted sex toys.
Having a micropenis might not be something that’s glamorized in our culture, but it’s hardly an impediment to having good sex. Besides, there’s a lot more to life than penis size.
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