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Video: Man's Anatomy
The body changes significantly during puberty. Typical sexual characteristics or organs develop. So that at the end of puberty the body is finally sexually mature. With puberty comes a time when young people have to familiarize themselves with their changed body and body awareness. A general distinction is made between primary gender characteristics (e.g. penis, testicles) that are present from birth but change, and secondary gender characteristics (e.g. armpit and intimate hair or pubic hair) that are only developing.
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- Testicles & scrotum
- Vas deferens, prostate & urethra
- Seminal fluid
Graphic: Male reproductive organs © Andrea Danti
The penis consists of three cavernous bodies. The urinary tube runs inside one of them ("erectile urethra"). Not only urine but also ejaculate (semen, seminal fluid) emerges from the penis through the urinary tube. The erectile tissue swells when sexually aroused. They are filled with blood. This leads to an erection, ie the penis becomes bigger and harder (also called “stiffer”). Every penis looks different. It can be a little thicker or thinner, a little longer or shorter - and it is often a little curved. It can have whitish or yellowish spots - that is usually not a problem, because it can be about glands.
The skin surrounds the penis up to the tip of the penis (also called the glans). The penis has an opening there through which urine and seminal fluid (ejaculate) can escape. The glans is usually covered by what is known as the foreskin. This foreskin should be flexible and can be pulled back behind the glans. If this is not the case, if the foreskin is difficult to push back or if this is painful, it may be a narrowing of the foreskin (phimosis). A clarification with the doctor (specialist in urology) is required. The glans is very sensitive because there are many nerve endings here. The foreskin may be cut (removed).
The penis can become stiff even when it is not wanted. This is particularly common during puberty. There are also frequent morning erections - the so-called "morning latte". It can also happen that the body does not want to like its owner and the penis does not become stiff - for example, with nervousness, fatigue, stress and problems, but also due to too much alcohol. However, if the penis never or only very rarely becomes stiff - and that in the long term - you should definitely see a urologist. Resident doctors can be found under doctor search.
Testicles & scrotum
The two testicles (testes) also begin to grow during puberty. They are egg-shaped and often not the same size - one usually hangs lower than the other so that there is more space between the thighs. The testicles are located in the scrotum (scrotum). The sperm cells (sperm) are produced in the testicles. They are temporarily stored in the epididymides (epididymides). They then reach the spermatic duct via small channels and the epididymis. The testes also produce the male sex hormone testosterone. In order to produce the sperm cells optimally, the testicles are about two degrees below normal body temperature. The testicles and scrotum are sensitive to touch and pain.
Vas deferens, prostate & urethra
The two vas deferens connect the epididymis via the vesicle gland and the prostate (prostate gland) with the urethra. The prostate lies under the bladder and around the urinary tube. A secretion (a type of fluid) formed in the prostate helps the sperm cells to move. The spermatic ducts converge in the prostate and form the urinary tube with the urethra. With the help of muscles, the tube is closed so far that no urine can pass through during a seminal discharge (ejaculation).
The ejaculate (sperm, seminal fluid) contains, among other things, sperm cells and various secretions (special fluids produced in the body) from the vesicle gland, prostate and epididymis, which help the sperm move. The ejaculate is gray-white to transparent. Boys have their first ejaculation between the ages of 11 and 16. With each ejaculation, only a few milliliters of semen are transported. However, these contain many millions of sperm cells. From the first ejaculation, a young man can father a child. Even the so-called pleasure droplet, which is formed by the so-called Cowper's glands and emerges before ejaculation, can contain sperm cells. This should also be considered in connection with contraception.
Note During puberty, a relative excess of estrogen can lead to breast growth. But this usually goes away again.
Information on growth, ejaculation and much more can be found under Physical Changes in Boys.
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