Understanding the Impact of Adult Circumcision

Understanding the Impact of Adult Circumcision

As many as 64% of male babies born in the United States are circumcised within days of birth. It is a common and safe procedure here in America that can make it easier for caregivers and then the child himself to keep the penis clean. However, men who were not circumcised as children can still opt for adult circumcision.

Why would an adult male choose to get circumcised? The reasons for adult circumcision are varied and often personal, encompassing medical, aesthetic, cultural, and psychological factors. This article delves into the rationale behind adult circumcision and what it entails.

Medical Motivations

For some men, their desire for adult circumcision is rooted in medical needs. Of course, any medically motivated reason for circumcision should be thoroughly discussed with a doctor. There are a few medical reasons a man and his doctor would opt for circumcision.

General Health and Hygiene

Medical necessity is a primary driver for adults considering male circumcision. Many men find a circumcised penis to be easier to clean than an intact penis, making it easier to avoid hygiene issues.

Research suggests that circumcised men may have the following health benefits:

  • Phimosis (where the foreskin cannot be fully retracted over the glans)
  • Recurrent balanitis (inflammation of the glans) can make circumcision a practical solution
  • HIV prevention and decrease the risk of certain other sexually transmitted infections
  • Prevent urinary tract infections (UTIs)
  • Penile cancer is less common in men with circumcised penises


Phimosis occurs when the penis foreskin is too tight to be retracted over the head (glans) of the uncircumcised penis. Scarring of the foreskin from injury, infection, inflammation, or certain skin conditions present on the penis can lead to phimosis.

When phimosis causes pain, usually when the penis is erect, many men choose circumcision for relief. In rare cases, phimosis can cause problems with urination as well.

Recurrent Balanitis

Balanitis is the inflammation of the glans penis (the head of the penis).

Fungal infection is the overall most common cause of balanitis, usually Candida albicans. Candida is a common fungus, but it doesn’t always cause such severe problems. Poor hygiene of an uncircumcised penis can lead to an increase in fungus and infections associated with balanitis.

Other causes of balanitis include:

  • Infection from other fungi, bacteria, and viruses
  • Irritation from chemicals
  • Allergies and dermatitis
  • Health conditions like heart failure, obesity, and diabetes

Read More About The Ultimate Guide to Penis Health

Cultural and Religious Considerations

For many, adult circumcision aligns with cultural or religious beliefs, mostly Jewish and Islamic communities. Men who convert to religions that traditionally practice circumcision often undergo the procedure as a rite of passage or to fulfill religious obligations. For these men, the choice to undergo circumcision is based on emotional or spiritual benefit.

Sexual Experience and Sensitivity

There’s an ongoing debate about whether circumcision affects sexual pleasure. While some men report improved hygiene and reduced risk of infections contributing to a more positive sexual experience, others worry about the loss of sensitivity from surgical removal of their foreskin. However, studies have shown that adult circumcision has no adverse effects on sexual stimulation.

Especially for men experiencing phimosis or another painful infection of the penis glans, adult circumcision can relieve pain and make sex enjoyable again.

Read More About 10 Most Frequently Asked Questions About Male Sexual Health

Psychological and Emotional Well-Being

Psychological factors, such as self-esteem and body confidence, can also prompt the decision. Men who feel self-conscious or dissatisfied with their foreskin may seek circumcision. The anticipation of feeling more comfortable in one’s skin or conforming to one’s self-ideal can be a strong motivating factor.

Aesthetic Preference

Aesthetics play a non-negligible role. Some men may prefer the appearance of a circumcised penis over intact foreskin, which can influence their choice. Personal preference, whether shaped by self-image or intimate experiences, can significantly sway a man’s decision towards undergoing the procedure.

Increased Self-Esteem

When a man’s penis does not match his preference, he can experience low sexual confidence and even embarrassment in nonsexual situations, such as in public bathrooms. Adult circumcision is a low-risk way of helping men see the penis aesthetics they want. Adult men who opt for circumcision report positive effects in terms of sexual life and confidence.

Read About Overcoming Penis Size Anxiety: The Physical and Psychological Impacts

The Procedure and Its Considerations

A doctor typically performs adult circumcision under local anesthesia, not general anesthesia. As a relatively simple procedure, adult circumcision typically takes a short amount of time as an outpatient treatment. Unlike infant circumcision, the adult version requires a recovery period of rest and limited physical activity to facilitate healing.

Adult circumcision does not affect fertility or cause issues like erectile dysfunction that would affect sexual pleasure.

Informed Decision-Making

Overall, male circumcision has very few risks. However, it’s crucial for anyone considering adult circumcision to consult with a qualified healthcare provider. These professionals can offer insights into the benefits and risks, post-operative care, and potential impacts on life and health. A medical doctor can give you information about how to heal properly and what to expect as you go back to normal sexual function.


The decision to pursue adult circumcision is a personal one, influenced by a complex interplay of health, aesthetics, culture, and psychology. You should not make this decision lightly, but you should also not shroud it in mystery or stigma. With the right information and medical advice, men can make a choice that aligns with their values, health goals, and personal comfort.

For those contemplating this procedure, seeking counsel and thorough understanding is the key. If you are considering adult circumcision and wish to discuss this further, scheduling a consultation with Prometheus by Dr. Malik can provide clarity and guide you toward making an informed decision that’s right for you.

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Aydogmus, Y., Semiz, M., Er, O., Bas, O., Atay, I., & Kilinc, M. F. (2016). Psychological and sexual effects of circumcision in adult males. Canadian Urological Association Journal, 10(5-6), E156. https://doi.org/10.5489/cuaj.3364

Website, N. (2022, September 27). Circumcision in men. nhs.uk. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/circumcision-in-men/


  • Dr. Amelia Hart

    Dr. Amelia Hart is a distinguished author and medical expert renowned for her captivating narratives that bridge the gap between the intricate world of medicine and the everyday experiences of her readers.


Dr. Malik is a renowned expert in men's health and enhancement. With degrees in Chemical Engineering and Medicine, he developed the St. Francis Sports Medicine fellowship and published a notable statement on steroid use.

Now Dr. Malik is Atlanta’s leading penis enlargement expert. His influential blog provides practical advice and reliable insights for men seeking enhancement solutions.