Erection in kids: Don't freak, here is how to handle them

Kid bathing

The first time I encountered it, I was assured there’s something wrong as I associated erections only with puberty or masturbation. I remember calling my husband frantically, only to have him give me a two-word answer—'It’s normal'.

Experts say that erection is kids is common, especially for boys from the time they are in the womb. It continues to happen many times in a day, even after birth. In fact, early erections occur for no reason at all.

Erection in kids, especially babies are just uncontrolled reactions of a healthy nervous system and parents need not worry about them. So there is no reason for parents to believe that the erection is a result of sexual stimulation.

Babies and toddlers are curious about their bodies and often play with their private parts. As your little boy grows, he may often hit, touch or fiddle with his organ. "At times, some children may also indulge in something called infantile masturbation. This happens when a young child rubs his/her private parts vigorously with the hands or over a surface such as the bed. They may even reach an orgasmic state and may exhibit shivering. This is just a medium of release for a child. Often, it is mistaken by parents as chills or another disorder.

But again, even infantile masturbation is something very normal and common and must be ignored as children outgrow it soon. It can be very embarrassing for a parent to deal with a child exploring his private parts or sporting an erection. But what is way more important is how we deal with them.

Here are some pointers parents must bear in mind when dealing with an erection in kids.


If you find your little child exploring his private parts, do not scold or shame him. Gently distract him if you find it embarrassing. If the child is older, then you can take this opportunity to teach him about his body parts.

Erections that occur and subside by themselves must be ignored. It is only when the erection hurts the child and the penis and scrotum appear hurt, swollen or red must a parent consult a pediatrician.

It is parents who influence a child’s outlook on sexual behavior at a young age. A child will grow up to have a healthy sexual attitude only if people around him don’t treat his curiosities as dirty. Healthy awareness towards sexuality will also help a child distinguish between good touch and bad touch.

Our society still has some way to go until we openly accept our sexual organs as a normal part of the body. So if you notice your little boy playing with his peeing organ, be thankful he's normal.
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