Dr. Edward Zimmerman, aka TikTok’s @dickdocontiktok, is a doctor who breaks down all the myths and facts about penises. He is currently practicing with Aesthetic Revolution.
He recently chatted with Buzzfeed about all kinds of interesting penis facts and we’ve got the best questions here for you.
First, up, average size! Dr. Zimmerman said that the average size is about five inches long when erect.” And, interestingly enough, the average penis at its widest circumference is about 4 3/4 to 5.1 inches around,” he said.
“We get questions like, ‘Are finger size, shoe size, or nationality related to the penis?’ And there is no good science to support that. In addition, a penis under 2.5 inches is considered a microphallus, but even small penises can get the job done, he said, adding, “I can speak to the fact that the exterior presentation of a gentleman has very little to do with what you’ll find under the belt. Sometimes it’s quite humbling and quite surprising.”
Zimmerman also answered the question about whether or not the penis stops growing: yup, it does. It reaches its peak size from just after puberty to the early twenties. But they do experience shrinkage — and not just in the pool.
“Penises shrink with age — just like how you lose volume in your face and neck. Down below, you’ll lose girth and you’ll also lose length if you’re rarely using it. It truly is a use-it-or-lose-it type of deal.”
So now you might be wondering: can you make your penis longer? Dr. Zimmerman told Buzzfeed, “Think about how hard it would be to try to make someone taller. If you damage the internal organs that cause the erection, then you may have erectile problems for life and that’s not worth it.”
“To get length, you can do something called jelqing (penis-stretching exercises) or you can use penis pumps to give you a temporary elongation, but it’s like going to the gym. Once you stop going, things pretty much go back to the way they would have been if you’d never done it,” he explained.
Dr. Zimmerman also said that it’s actually better to increase the girth, not length.
“Girth is probably more important in terms of how we satisfy our partners. The first two inches or so of the vaginal canal has the most sensory elements and more girth is probably more important to stimulating and satisfying a partner with a vagina,” he said.
Of course, the process is pretty gnarly. The doctor told Buzzfeed, “The procedure is done by placing either fat grafts or FDA-approved materials in the space between the inner organs of the penis and the outer skin of the penis.”
“Inside the penis, there are three elongated tubes — the corpus cavernosum on top, the corpus cavernosum on the bottom, and the corpus spongiosum. The corpus cavernosum tubes are blood-filled balloons that cause the penis to be erect. Going through the corpus spongiosum on the bottom is the urethra — this is the transit from the bladder that allows urine and semen to get out of the tip of the penis. So, we don’t want to do anything that messes with that or compresses it, causing things to not be able to get out. The area between this inner conduit and the outer skin is potential space to add girth, almost like the space on the back of your hand. It extends virtually, a lot — safely,” Dr. Zimmerman said.
Now it’s time to talk about a controversial penis decision: circumcision.
“Think about if you’ve ever had a broken arm or broken leg. When you first take the cast off, it seems — because you had nothing to cause sensation — super sensitive. It’s kind of the same thing. If you have a foreskin, it protects the glans of the penis, that distal tip. It gets less stimulation, but as the penis elongates during erection, it gets more attention. So, it may feel more sensitive, but the actual nerves are performing the same,” he explained.
Dr. Zimmerman continued, “The female analogy to this is the clitoral hood. When things are at rest and the clitoris isn’t as exposed, there’s less sensation. But, during arousal, the hood draws back because the clitoris gets engorged and it gets more attention and more sensation.”
So is the circumcision necessary for penile health? “As a family practitioner, I’ve delivered hundreds, thousands of babies — and had the opportunity to circumcise or not circumcise those babies. The pendulum has shifted in terms of our understanding. Is it necessary? Probably not.”
According to the CDC, three clinical trials have found that HIV risk increases from vaginal intercourse with an uncircumcised penis; there have also been clinical trials that show circumcised people are 42% less likely to have syphilis injections, 48% less likely to have genital ulcer disease, 32-35% less likely to contract HPV, and 28-24% less likely to contract genital herpes.
“Circumcision may also decrease the chances of a person with a vagina getting cervical cancer because the penis can be a conduit to carry germs and viruses up the vaginal canal. But, as long as someone is able to withdraw the foreskin, keep the tethers from forming, and keep the area clean so there aren’t low-grade fungal or bacterial infections, circumcision probably isn’t necessary,” D. Zimmerman said.
“Cleaning the penis is good, but a certain amount of natural oils need to be on the skin so that things don’t dry out. If you have a foreskin, you need to pull it back and cleanse the collection of oils out so it doesn’t ferment or become a place for bacteria, viruses, or fungus to grow.”
Zimmerman says that when cleaning the penis, it’s important to remember that “a certain amount of natural oils need to be on the skin so that things don’t dry out. If you have a foreskin, you need to pull it back and cleanse the collection of oils out so it doesn’t ferment or become a place for bacteria, viruses, or fungus to grow.”
He says you can use any soap or body wash — as long as you rinse well.
Dr. Zimmerman also told BuzzFeed that it might be a surprise but crooked or curved penises can actually be more pleasurable during intercourse.
“Peyronie’s syndrome is very common and some say more enjoyable during sex. As long as it’s functional, doesn’t cause pain, and you’re able to urinate and have good relations without pain, it’s not an issue.
“A penis curves in a certain direction when one of the two internal tubes has a little stricture in it. As long as the penis doesn’t curve past about 30 degrees, they may actually be more enjoyable to their partner.If it goes past 30 degrees, it can make relation uncomfortable for one partner or the other,” he said.
And yup: your penis can break.
“The most common time it happens is during athletic sexual relations. You will know if it ‘breaks’ because it is quite painful. It is put in a splint and could take 6-12 weeks to heal,” he said.
What about something like Viagra?
“Viagra was originally invented to treat pulmonary hypertension and a side effect of it is an erection! But, you want to use it with caution and always speak to your doctor before using it. “Too much of it can put you at risk for something called priapism, which is where you get an erection that can’t go down — and it could lead to a surgical emergency. The recommendation is to not be erect for more than four hours at a time in one day.
“Unfortunately, our giant pharma companies have strangled the price on Viagra — the price is ridiculous for the happiness that it brings,” he said.