Whenever I try to pull the skin on my penis back it won’t go back because it’s connected to my penis by a small piece of skin on the inside. What should I do?

Last updated on August 15, 2020


Hi! I’m 14 and uncircumcised. Whenever I try to pull the skin on my penis back it won’t go back because it’s connected to my penis by a small piece of skin on the inside. What should I do?


Every male is born uncircumcised. The skin on the shaft of the penis folds over to cover the end of the penis, which is called the glans. It is much like holding the end of a long-sleeved shirt and starting to pull your arm out of the shirt. The cloth at the end of the sleeve doubles over and covers your hand. In the image, the left picture is of a circumcised penis and the right is of an uncircumcised penis.

When boys are born, their foreskin is attached to the glans. Over time the foreskin detaches so that between the ages of three and five, the foreskin should be able to be pulled back to completely expose the glans. It is very important that foreskin should never be forced back as it can cause damage to the surface of the glans or the inner surface of the foreskin. The skin is supposed to be gently pulled back as far as it is able to go. For a few boys, this separation of the glans and foreskin doesn’t take place and it might not take place until after puberty when the penis begins to grow.

If the separation doesn’t occur it can cause problems when you get an erection. The erection stretches the skin of the penis and then pulls at the part that is connected. It will either tear, or the body responds to the pain and keeps you from getting a full erection. Because this is your own body, those with a connected foreskin don’t realize they have a problem until they get married and try to have sex. The pain can make sex hard to accomplish.

Fortunately, there appears to be a simple way to encourage the foreskin to separate. Every time that you can, grasp your foreskin (but not the penis) and pull it away from your body as far as you comfortably can do so. It will much further than you would expect. Do it when you get dressed, when you’re using the bathroom, when your showering, or any other time you have privacy.

The act of pulling away from the body instead of rolling it toward the body causes a shearing action instead of pulling the two parts apart. Each time you shower, gentle roll the foreskin back toward your body as far as it can go without discomfort. Use water and warm water to gently clean out from underneath the foreskin. Avoid using soap as any soap left on the inside of the foreskin will cause irritation.

It may take a few months, but you should soon see that you can get your foreskin back further and further. Keep the pulling up until the foreskin is completely separated from the glans.

If for some reason this doesn’t ever separate (a very rare case), then you should see a urologist who can clip the skin that is attached to the glans. He might try to talk you into getting a full circumcision, but such is not necessary. Just insist on getting the offending skin removed.