Dear Dr G,

I went to a dinner party with my wife recently.

After a bit of alcohol, all the guests seemed to be rather disinhibited and the dinner conversation just evolved around one person who went for genital piercing.

Following the dinner party, my wife could not get the idea out of her head and mentioned how sexy she finds them. She has even asked me to think about doing it.

I am rather horrified with the thought of some jewellery hanging on my manhood.However, I love her so much and will consider the piercing.

With such piercing ideas in my head, I hope to put Dr. G on the spot for help.

Can you tell me why do people get their genitals pierced? What is the origin of such practice and how is it performed?

Is the piercing purely is for accessory purpose or are there sexual benefits? Are they really uncomfortable? Any risk involved?

I really feel pressured to accept genital piercing, please help me to decide to pierce or not to pierce.

Pressurised Peter

Genital piercing is a practice involving piercing a part of the genitalia, for the purpose of wearing different types of ornaments or jewellery. Technically, genital piercing also include other sexually related organs, including nipples, pubis, anus and perineum.

Genital piercing is carried out both in men and women with the main intention for beautification and individualisation. However, some individuals also have the piercings with the purpose of enhancing sexual experience by increasing the sexual stimulations.

The practice of genital piercing is believed to exist as far back as 2,000 years ago as depicted in the writings of Kama Sutra. However, modern days documentations of genital piercing were only found in the many tribal communities in South-East Asia, especially our own country.

A Dutch explorer was first to describe traditional genital piercing in different tribes in Sabah and Sarawak, and introduced such practice to Western societies in the 19th Century. The piercings were popular, in particular with the upper class, during the Victorian era, as many royals were noted to have received both genital and nipple piercing.

The practice of Prince Albert piercing emerged in the Victorian era, very specifically referring to “A ring style piercing that extends along the underside of the glans penis, from the urethral opening to where the glans meets the shaft of the penis” while the reverse Prince Albert piercing is specific to “piercing traversing the urethral and exit through a hole in the top of the glans”.

Although the Prince Albert may be the most well known genital piercing, other types of the piercing are also available in the market.

Piercing in men is done for circumcised men through the frenulum in the midline; the off-centre practice for uncircumcised men with surrounding skin reposition itself is also common. The initial piercing generally is done with a small diameter piercing (2.5mm) and this is followed by gradual stretch soon after, for the jewellery insertion with the larger diameter up to 9mm.

Some piercers may choose to have the immediate stretch to accommodate wider rings in the first setting. Such practice may risk a delayed wound healing or even “cheese-cutter effect”.

Generally, the healing time for genital piercing can range from one to six months, and mild complications such as bleeding, swelling and local inflammation may be expected.

The jewellery suitable for piercing may include circular barbell, curved barbell, captive beads or Prince’s wand. Of course, the choice of the jewellery can range from stainless steel to implant grade titanium or solid 18K gold, depending on personal preference. Most wearers find the genital jewellery comfortable at all times and rarely remove them; this obviously depends on the weight and size of the jewellery and the manhood to start off with!

There is no robust medical evidence to support the enhancement of sexual performance in men having the genital piercing. However, some anecdotal reports suggest the placement of piercings such as apadravya and ampallang (both are piercings passed through the head of the penis vertically or horizontally) will have the benefits to heighten the sensation for female partners. On the contrary, many reports also highlight discomfort to female partners, when the piercing comes in contact with the cervix have also been documented. In addition, wearing condoms with a piercing is other considered pointless as the piercing often breach the barrier caused by tears of ornaments during sex.

One of the worries faced by the body piercers is when your travel companions, unaware of your penchants for piercing, suddenly discover your embarrassment during an unplanned disclosure at the airport security screening. In most instances, non-ferromagnetic jewellery will not set off the walk through metal detectors. However, the hand-held wands are often more sensitive and can sound the alarm when screening directly over the body part!

The former White House press secretary Bill Moyers once said: “Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvellous.”

Although the idea of genital piercing may seem completely bonkers to some, such practices may also be literally piercing the creativity minds and finding the marvellous between the sheets for others.

Dr G is often put on the spot to answer to question of “to do or not to do?”

I guess the advice Dr G can provide to those braving the thoughts of genital piercing is “don’t get pressured to piercing the mundane by the extremes, as finding the marvelous between the sheets is often a less piercing form of creativity!”

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