• Beginner's Guide to Urethral Sounding

    What is urethral sounding? Originally a medical procedure, you may have heard the term but wonder why anyone would do it for pleasure. Many people are exploring their bodies in new ways, and discovering the arousing sensations associated with urethral play.

    At Lovehoney, we encourage you to explore your body fully and get to know what you like but, as always, there are safety measures to consider. This guide takes you through everything you need to know about urethral probing, and how to make sure you do it safely.

    Above: Still not really sure what urethral sounding is, or why people want to do it? Let Jess Wilde give you the facts in this video guide.

    What is Urethral Play?

    Urethral play is the process of dilating the urethra by inserting a plug or probe (also known as a sound). Just as the head of the penis is super-sensitive to touch, the urethra is also packed with highly-responsive nerve endings which feel amazing when stimulated.

    Some urethral toys are designed specifically for stretched sensations, while others are long enough to reach otherwise-untouchable erogenous zones such as the prostate.

    It's important to understand what to expect from urethral probing, and the differences between urethral plugs and sounds. While they are both designed to be inserted into the penis, they are suited to different sorts of play.

    1. Penis Plugs

    A penis plug is a short insertable toy which is designed to be inserted into the first few inches urethra and are sometimes suitable for prolonged wear. They are usually short (between 1 - 4 inches long) and stimulate the tip of the penis internally.

    DOMINIX Deluxe Through-Hole Penis PlugWearing a penis plug can increase sensitivity, prolong erections and intensify orgasms. Often considered body jewellery, lots of men wear a penis plug to achieve the appearance of a 'Prince Albert' piercing, without the need to actually get pierced.

    Penis plugs come in an array of designs and styles. Some are designed with a glans ring to help keep it in place, while others are textured for heightened sensation. Some designs feature a hole through the middle to allow the wearer to urinate and ejaculate without removal, while others are solid.

    Overall, no matter which design you go for, a penis plug will increase sensitivity, prolong erections and provide scintillating sensations during play.

    2. Urethral Sounds

    Sextreme 6mm Double Ended Stainless Steel Ribbed Urethral DilatorA urethral sound is a tool used in medicine to dilate the urethra for medical examinations, however they can also be used for sexual pleasure.

    Much longer than a penis plug, urethral sounds enable the explorer to explore deeper nerve endings for an entirely new sensation. A sound is not designed for prolonged wear, but can stimulate areas of the body which are otherwise out of reach.

    Just like the penis plugs, urethral sounds come in many different sizes and styles. Some are extra long for internal prostate and bladder stimulation, while others intensify arousal with vibrations or even electrical stimulation. Lots of men report they've been able to experience hands-free, direct-contact prostate orgasms through urethral penetration.

    It's important to do your research and choose the right size probe for your experience level. Using a toy which is too slim or rigid could pierce the urethral wall, while a toy which is too thick could over-stretch your urethra and cause tearing. Read more about choosing the perfect probe below.

    Which is the Best Toy for Urethral Play?

    If you've decided to try a urethral sound, it's worth thinking about what features you're looking for before you buy. Scroll through the main types of penis plug and urethral sounds to get an idea of where to begin:

    How to Use a Urethral Sound

    Follow these simple instructions to safely explore your urethra and discover a whole new, thrilling way to satisfy your desires.

    • Start with the sound which fits your urethra best, with minimal stretching or resistance.
    • Ensure your toy is completely sanitised before play, and make sure you have plenty of sterile lubricant handy.
    • Clean your hands and penis before play (you may even want to use surgical gloves for ultimate cleanliness).
    • Add a generous squeeze of sterile lube to your penis opening and the first few inches of your toy.
    • Stabilize the sound with one hand, and place one end of the toy into your penis opening (you may find this easier while flaccid to begin with).
    • Let the sound gradually "fall" into the hole with gravity's help.
    • The sound will reach a point where it naturally stops. Leave it for a while and allow your urethra to relax around your toy.
    • You can now experiment with gently moving it in and out about half an inch.
    • Remove and re-lube as necessary.
    • For deeper exploration you may need to change the angle of penetration due to the natural bend in your urethra.
    • Anatomically, the opening in the glans is slightly wider than the urethra itself, so never force a toy that's too big into your urethra.
    • It may take some practice to find the perfect angle of play for you, so take it slow and steady. Never rush.

    Safety Tips

    ElectraStim Sterile Lubricant SachetsExploring urethral penetration can be extremely pleasurable, however there are a few safety tips you should consider before you delve in, so to speak!

    • Never insert anything into the urethra which isn't designed for that purpose. Inserting random objects can be extremely dangerous and cause serious injury, so don't do it!
    • Always ensure that your toys are completely sterile before play to avoid contracting a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection). Toys which are safe to boil (surgical steel and silicone) should be left to simmer for 10 minutes between uses. Other toys can be cleaned with an alcohol rub.
    • Always use a sterile lubricant to further reduce your risk of getting a UTI.
    • We don't recommend urethral penetration play for those prone to urinary tract infections.
    • First-time sounders should choose a flexible, medium-sized plug or sound. Until you're practiced in this play, choosing something too rigid or too slim can increase your risk of puncturing the urethral wall.
    • Using a toy which is too thick is just as risky as using one which is too slim. Listen to your body and take it slow while deciding the right size for you.
    • If you feel a sharp pain or that one particular area hurts more, stop immediately.
    • You may experience some burning during urination for a few hours or the day after play (especially the first few times). This is normal, but you may like to use more lube next time. If these sensations continue for more than a day, seek medical attention.
    • If you experience unusual discharge, heavy bleeding, fever or cramping, seek medical attention.

    Need more help?

    You can Contact Customer Care, who will be able to help you find the perfect sound to start with. You can email, telephone or live chat to an experienced advisor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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    Comments (5)

    • JimD: May 17, 2015 23:16
      It’s good to take care when engaging in penis play of any kind. Sometimes soreness results; using a quality superior penis health creme (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil) with potent moisturizers and antioxidants can help to ease soreness.
    • masterofnone: May 28, 2015 16:30
      Has anyone ever stretched the meatus too fast. I didn't bleed. I went from a comfortable 8mm to 9mm and more less forced the 9mm. I didnt hurt nor was there blood. i left a 9mm plug in for 2 days. when I took it out it was a little sore and after about 1 week I cannot fit a 6mm in there only a 4mm. Did i cause trauma? No blood I am confused as to how it because smaller. stricture maybe?
    • Craig Wilson: June 07, 2015 16:24
      I recently purchased a Ziro hollow flexible penis plug. I am a first time user and can't insert it more than about 1/4 inch without feeling more pain than I care to. I am using plenty of Surgilube so that isn't the problem. Is this plug too big or am I doing something wrong.
    • Lovehoney Jess: June 26, 2015 14:05
      Hi everyone!

      masterofone - If you feel you've regressed in your ability to insert sounds, it may be that you have stretched just a little too quickly. If you've made small micro-tears in the flesh, it won't bleed, but it can still scar. It's this scarring that can cause constriction. Even though the jump was only 1mm, the fact you have forced the sound is not recommended. There should be no force required when sounding and, generally speaking, the toy should insert itself via gravity, and with no manual assistance. It could also be that you've been left slightly swollen from the 2 day wear too. A simple anti-inflammatory should solve the issue, but if not, it's best to speak to your Doctor for extra advice.

      Craig Wilson - Definitely do NOT push through the pain. Although first-time sounding can feel a little strange and slightly uncomfortable, it should never hurt. Never force anything into your urethra. I would recommend trying a different sound to begin your sounding experience. Something with more weight, and a smooth rounded tip. This way, once you've lubed the area and toy, you can simply allow gravity to do the hard work for you. Ideally you shouldn't need to assist the toy with your hands almost at all. It will reach a point where it naturally stops. Just leave it where it is to allow your body to adjust. Then, if you feel comfortable, you can gently adjust the angle and apply a SMALL amount or pressure to insert deeper. I would suggest trying to insert the plug whilst erect, and flaccid to see what works for you. Many people report that inserting while flaccid is much easier. Most importantly, don't rush. Follow our bullet point instructions above and research the shape of your anatomy so you have a full understanding any obstacles and bends in your urethra.

      As with anything, take your time, understand and listen to your body, and if you're having problems, visit your Doctor.



    • christopher: November 23, 2016 21:51
      hi I'm wanting to try a penis plug but I'm scared to try it as I'm a cut guy and I no it will hurt me so I need to be at ease using one so I like to no if there is anything in my home I can use that looks like a penis plug
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