After a heated session which does not culminate in a release of pressure, so to speak, men will often complain about pain in the region of the groin and testicles which they attribute to a condition commonly referred to as "blue balls." While men will tell anyone who will listen about how uncomfortable this problem can be, women often dismiss the issue, seeing it as nothing more than an excuse or a way to pressure a partner into going further than she would necessarily prefer. However, there may be more truth behind this mysterious problem than women understand; and men can learn a thing or two about penis care and comfort, as well.

Blue balls - fact or fiction?

Actually, no matter how much it sounds like an excuse to get her to go all the way, there is a degree of physiological truth behind this fabled problem. When a man becomes aroused, the blood vessels leading to the penis become enlarged, allowing for increased blood flow. On the other hand, the blood vessels leading away from the genital area become constricted, limiting the amount of blood that can flow away from the area. The increased amount of blood in the area correspondingly increases the size of the penis and testicular area, sometimes by as much as twenty-five percent. This, of course, is necessary for an erection to take place. But once the act is complete, the hormones released on ejaculation signal everything to return to normal. However, when a man is aroused but does not achieve release, this can result in a feeling of heaviness in the pelvic region which is familiarly described as blue balls - or more scientifically, as vasocongestion.

Now that that part is straightened out, it’s time to talk about what this does not mean. Many a female has heard a guy complain that he is in pain and that he "needs" sex to relieve it. This is not, of course, an excuse to pressure a woman, since guys are well-equipped and well-versed in the means to relieve the pressure themselves. Some of the things that will not happen as a result of blue balls are as follows:

• Severe, disabling pain - Medically, blue balls have been determined to cause mild to moderate discomfort - an ache or sensation of heaviness or fullness in the nether regions. However, this sensation should not deter a man from going about his normal activities, or from driving home.

• Permanent injury - Even without ejaculation, the fact is that after a time, the blood vessels of the penis will relax and everything will return to normal. No permanent damage has ever been reported as a result of vasocongestion.

Preventing blue balls and maintaining a healthy penis

Men have generally been socialized to believe that whenever they become aroused, they need to ejaculate to relieve the pressure. While this release does resolve the problem, it can be taken care of easily through masturbation, easing the discomfort caused by prolonged engorgement. At the same time, there is no need to be concerned about permanent damage, as the problem will generally resolve on its own. In the meantime, supporting optimum circulatory function through use of a penis health formula (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil) containing vitamin C (needed for healthy circulatory tissue) and L-arginine (an amino acid which works to relax the blood vessels) can help to maintain overall penis health and keep the juices flowing. In addition, all-natural moisturizers such as shea butter and vitamin E can keep the skin well-lubricated, ensuring that whether the pressure is relieved manually or with a partner, the skin feels soft and supple and is resistant to chafing and irritation.