A lack of sensation in the penis, otherwise known as a numb penis, can be uncomfortable, frustrating, and cause anxiety. It can also lead to a decreased desire for sexual activity.
If you’re losing sensation in your genital area and wondering, “why is my penis numb?” — you aren't alone. From cycling to nerve issues, there are a variety of reasons for a lack of sensation in the penis.
Let’s cover the ins and outs of a numb penis, so you can be proactive moving forward.
Symptoms of Numb Penis
Obviously, the main symptom of a numb penis is that your penis feels numb. Penile sensation can vary from person to person. In some people, the sensation may be similar to the feeling that happens when your arm or foot falls asleep. Some may feel slight stimulation during sexual activity, while others report feeling nothing at all.
If you think you’re losing sensation in your penis, there are a handful of other symptoms to be aware of. These symptoms may vary depending on the underlying cause of your numb penis.
- Loss of sensation in one or both testicles
- Perineal numbness
- Loss of feeling in the foreskin or skin around the penis
- A tingling feeling
- A “pins and needles” feeling
- A burning feeling
- Bluish or purplish skin
- A feeling of being cold
Causes of Numb Penis
There are a variety of issues that may lead you to ask — why is my penis numb? Genital numbness can be caused by lifestyle factors as well as certain injuries or diseases. Talk to your doctor about your symptoms. If you’re experiencing numbness, here are some possible reasons why.
The prostate produces the fluid that carries sperm and helps to push this fluid out during the process of ejaculation. As such, the prostate plays a pivotal role in the process of reproduction. When there is damage to the prostate, or a tumor, this can lead to changes in penile sensitivity and overall numbness.
It’s possible that tight clothing can rub against the penis in a way that leads to tingling or a feeling of numbness. This can also cause redness and irritation.
In some cases, soaps and various hygiene products may be to blame for a numb penis. These can irritate the skin around the penis and lead to a sensation of numbness.
Peyronie's Disease is a buildup of scar tissue within the penis. Because the scar tissue is less sensitive than the regular tissue, it can lead to penile numbness. Luckily, if you’re looking for how to increase penis sensitivity, there are plenty of safe ED products like Eddie by Giddy that may help.
Testosterone levels play an important role in regulating overall sexual function. Low testosterone levels, for example, are common in older adults and can lead to a reduction in sexual desire or reduced pleasure from sexual activity. Low testosterone can also lead to a numb penis, though typically, in this case, an individual is still able to feel pain.
Nerve damage, also known as neuropathy, can also be why your penis feels numb. Nerve damage can happen for a variety of reasons, from accidents and injuries to medical conditions. Diseases like diabetes and multiple sclerosis (MS), for example, can lead to nerve damage, impact penis sensitivity, and result in sexual dysfunction.
In some cases of erectile dysfunction, men may turn to penis pumps. This is a plastic tube that fits over the penis with a hand or battery-powered pump attached to it. It also consists of a band that fits around the base of the penis once it’s erect. Also called a vacuum pump, these pumps can lead to a numb penis along with coldness or bluish-colored skin.
Certain medications can also lead to a numb penis. Selegiline hydrochloride (brand name Eldepryl) is used to treat Parkinson’s disease and lists penile numbness as a possible side effect. PDE5 inhibitors, such as Viagra and Cialis, are designed to increase blood flow to the penis, though they can also decrease penis sensitivity and lead to a feeling of numbness. So, if you want to learn how to increase blood flow to the penis, speak with your health care provider about an alternative to these medications.
Certain anesthetics like lidocaine can also cause loss of feeling in the skin and surrounding tissues. It’s often used to treat minor burns, insect bites, or scrapes. If you’ve recently used lidocaine on the penis area, this will lead to overall numbness in the region.
Because the penis is rigid and not flexible during sexual activity, it puts it at risk for fractures, bruises, and injuries. Whether it's during sex with a partner or masturbation, a sex-related injury can lead to pain, irritation, and numbness.
Because of the bumps and various surfaces in the road, riding a bike can lead to injuries to the perineum, testicles, and penis. It can also place pressure on the groin, restricting the nerves or a blood vessel and leading to a numb penis.
A Harvard Medical School article finds that a narrow bike seat can reduce blood flow to the penis by as much as 66%—and even a broad seat might reduce blood flow by 25%. Penile numbness, especially in avid cyclers, has to do with the pressure that’s put on the perineum (the region that runs from the anus to the sex organs). When this happens, crucial nerves and arteries are compressed, leading to loss of sensation.
In this particular case, the experts at Harvard suggest following these simple solutions to help eliminate a numb penis after a long bike ride.
- Do not use a racing seat with a narrow and long nose. Instead, choose a wide bicycle seat with lots of padding. Gel-filled and shock-absorbing seats are preferred.
- Do not tilt your seat upward. Doing this can increase pressure on the perineum.
- Make sure that your seat is at the correct height and that your legs aren’t totally extended at the bottom of your pedal stroke.
- Wear padded bike shorts or biking pants for more protection.
- Raise the handlebars, so that you’re sitting in a more upright position.
- During long rides, make sure to shift your position and pause for breaks.
What to Do to Help
The first step when it comes to genital issues is to be aware of your symptoms and their potential causes. Remember, there are certain measures you can take to help you detect changes and know when an issue should be a cause for concern.
If you're experiencing a numb penis, here are some ways to get help from doctors, with lifestyle changes, and by switching up your method of ED treatment.
If your penis feels numb—and it’s due to testosterone levels—there are ways to utilize testosterone therapy to improve your sex life. Testosterone therapy can be done through gels, pills, patches, and shots.
As we mentioned before, if you’re an avid cycler experiencing a numb penis, try changing seats. This is also true for people who sit frequently during work—as hard surfaces or uncomfortable seats can lead to numbness. Try changing chairs, standing when possible, investing in a cushion with gel, and taking breaks throughout the day.
If you’ve been prescribed medications for conditions like MS or Peyronie’s disease, consult your doctor about what they can do to help. In certain cases, they may be able to find ways to break down scar tissue in the penis or alleviate your symptoms of numbness.
Get Eddie by Giddy
If you’ve been using a medication, penis pumps, or additional methods to combat erectile dysfunction, consider using Eddie. Eddie by Giddy is a comfortable, medical-grade ED treatment. Break away from the cycle of pills and frustrating treatments and instead, step into a more fulfilling sex life. Whether your performance issues are physical, psychological, or the side effect of medications, Eddie offers an affordable and effective way to treat your ED. Once you try it, you’ll see why customers prefer Eddie by Giddy over other ED devices.
If you’ve been asking, “why is my penis numb?” — we hope this article has given you some insight and encouraged you to take the next steps. Talk with your healthcare provider about your feelings and symptoms. Your issue could be caused by something as simple as a bicycle seat, or it could be more serious.
As always, being proactive is a good way to stay healthy. Take a look at our website to answer any questions about how Eddie works, how to wear it, how to choose the right size, learn more about the ED Guide video series, and much more.
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4. ELDEPRYL. FDA. URL. Accessed January 8th, 2021.
5. Why is Your Penis Numb? Healthline. URL. Accessed January 8th, 2021.
6. Why Has My Penis Gone Numb? Medical News Today. URL. Accessed January 8th, 2021.
7. Lidocaine skin cream or ointment. URL. Accessed January 8th, 2021.
8. Men’s Health. Mayo Clinic. URL. Accessed January 8th, 2021.