The foreskin has twelve known functions.
- to cover and bond with the synechia so as to permit the development of the mucosal surface of the glans and inner foreskin.
- to protect the infant's glans from feces and ammonia in diapers.
- to protect the glans penis from friction and abrasion throughout life.
- to keep the glans moisturized and soft with emollient oils.
- to lubricate the glans.
- to coat the glans with a waxy protective substance.
- to provide sufficient skin to cover an erection by unfolding.
- to provide an aid to masturbation and foreplay.
- to serve as an aid to penetration.
- to reduce friction and chafing during intercourse.
- to serve as erogenous tissue because of its rich supply of erogenous receptors.
- to contact and stimulate the G-spot of the female partner.
The purpose of the foreskin is to protect the glans or head of the penis which is very sensitive. The inner part of the foreskin is also very sensitive to stimulation and it facilitates a natural sliding motion during sexual intercourse which increases stimulation and sexual pleasure for both partners. The sliding mechanism is described in the image below
In teenagers and adults, the foreskin can slide back to expose the penis head. This frequently occurs during an erection. In infants and children the foreskin does not retract until sometime in childhood, usually by age 12.
How the foreskin functions during intercourse:
The foreskin itself generally accounts for 50% or more of penile skin. During intercourse penetration the foreskin is normally pushed back and effectively inverts as described in parts 1, 2, 3 & 4 for the image series below. As the penis is pulled back from the vagina the foreskin itself pulls back over the head of the penis as described in parts 5 & 6.