The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

Hi,

I'm a 16 year old boy and a virgin. Over the last year or so I've noticed some tiny white spots appearing on the underside of my penis where the shaft meets the scrotum. They're painless and look a little like hair follicles, but smaller, and there are a large amount of them grouped in one area. Occasionally one or two of them get larger, and when I squeeze them a little bit of thick white stuff comes out, then the spot goes away. I have Fordyce spots too, but these seem a bit different, these are smaller, and aren't so much like a bump, but just a spot. I'm just wondering what they are and if they are bad, and what I can do to get rid of them?

Thanks


Answer

Fordyce spots are where you can see your sebaceous glands through the thin lining of your skin on your genitals. Sebaceous glands are the oil glands in your skin which keeps your skin flexible and soft. It is common to have bumps from these glands during two periods of your life, when you are a newborn and when you are an adolescent. The glands are typically a whitish-yellow color, which comes from the sebum -- an thick oil that the sebaceous glands produce. You can tell they are sebaceous glands because it appears a hair is coming out of them or next to them.

Sometimes when the sebaceous glands get over active and form small white or yellow bumps, which is call milia. This image is of milia on a person's face, but it shows the grouping of bumps well. It can show up on the scrotum as well. Essentially you can consider them to be like acne but without the infections that cause the redness in acne.

These bumps typically fade by the time you finish growing and your hormones settle down. Meanwhile, just keep the area clean. Even when a few swell up a small amount, they typically go away in a few months. Avoid popping the bumps since that can tear the skin and allow bacteria into the glands.

If the bumps are multiplying or are getting bigger and don't fade away, then you may want to see a dermatologist. There some conditions that cause a person to be more prone to milia that are treatable.