Most people thought that circumcision is a common occurrence, normal thing doctors do for every newborn child. In reality, circumcision is a pretty big deal. It takes a lot of serious planning, counseling, and a lot of thinking before you take your child in the hospital and have them circumcised.
According to most pediatricians, as well as well-known baby care sites like bestbabycares.com circumcision is a delicate topic that can sometimes lead to heated arguments. So, we listed some of the common circumcision myths to give parents an idea of whether it is suitable for their babies or not.
Myth 1 – Doctors just cut off the extra skin
The reality? It is not true. Penis foreskin is at least half of the overall skin, not just the flap. For adult men, the foreskin is more or less fifteen square inches of the foreskin. In children and babies, the foreskin is attached to the tip of the penis, the same category as the tissue that connects fingernails to the nail beds.
If you want to remove the foreskin, you need to shove a blunt probe between the tip of the penis and the foreskin. Cut down the foreskin around the head of the penis.
(To know more about circumcision procedure, visit https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/procedure-circumcision.html.)
Myth 2 – Circumcision will not hurt the baby
Well, this myth is very wrong. In 1997, researchers from Canada conducted a study to see whether what kind of anesthesia is best to use for relieving the pain of circumcision in babies. Just like any other studies conducted, they needed a controlled group that will receive no anesthesia.
The researchers eventually realized that babies who did not receive anesthesia experienced so much pain, and it is not ethical to continue the study. Even the most effective kind of pain reliever available in the market today, the penile nerve block, did not relieve the baby’s pain. Some babies that are involved in the research were in so much pain that the babies began choking and some even experienced a seizure.
Myth 3 – Doctors use anesthesia
Not necessarily. Most babies that are circumcised do not receive enough anesthesia. Only 45 percent of doctors that are doing circumcisions use anesthesia. Obstetricians perform most of the circumcisions, and most of them do not use anesthesia.
The common reason why doctors do not use anesthesia is that they don’t think that it is necessary to use any anesthetics in newborn infants undergoing circumcision procedure. A circumcision procedure with enough anesthesia will take at least half an hour. If the baby is brought back sooner, the baby is in so much pain during the procedure.
(If you want to know more about the anesthesia method used by anesthesiologists during circumcision, click here.)
Myth 4 – Babies won’t remember the painful procedure
The body will remember anything because it is a historical repository. The pain the circumcision produces will cause a rewiring in the baby’s brain, and that’s the reason why they are sensitive to any pain later in their life.
Circumcision can also cause PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder, anger, depression, intimacy problems, and low self-esteem. Even though babies cannot retain memory and the ability to protest, it does not mean that it is right to inflict pain.
Myth 5 – Babies will sleep right through it
It is not possible unless the baby is under general anesthesia, which is, unfortunately, not available in this procedure. Even if they use dorsal penile nerve block, it will still leave a part of the penis to be very sensitive to pain.
Babies can experience trauma, which looks like a quiet state, but actually, the babies will experience profound distress and pain. Nurses tell parents that the babies “slept right through it” to not upset them. Any parents would not want to hear their babies scream in pain and agony.
Myth 6 – Circumcision will not cause any long-term effect on the baby
It is false. Any healthy tissues that are removed from a non-consenting individual will cause specific effects in the long run. Circumcision causes a lot of side effects and risks, especially to babies. There is a one to three percent complication rate for newborn babies undergoing circumcision. Here are some of the potential complication circumcision can bring to patients.
Metal Stenosis – A lot of boys and men undergoing circumcision suffer from mental stenosis. It is the shrinking of the urethra, that can cause difficulty in urination and will require surgery to fix it.
Adhesions – Babies that undergo circumcision may suffer from complication called adhesions, where foreskin remnants will heal in areas that they are not supposed to grow. Doctors can treat this by ripping the excess foreskin with no anesthesia.
Infection – This is the most common complication when you undergo circumcision. Any open wounds can become infected if not properly taken care of. It is dangerous, especially that there is a rise in hospital-acquired drug-resistant bacteria today.