Of all the very real, diagnosable sexual maladies out there, it can often feel like the affliction we hear tossed around with maximal frequency is “blue balls.” Surely, someone has at least relayed a tale to you in which a human male makes the claim that he must reach climax because the very fact of being turned on has engorged his balls in such a way that causes unbearable, loathsome pain. Which is to say, not making him cum is an act of cruelty.
But, here’s the question: Are blue balls even a real thing?
Well...yes and no. The proper title for that which we’ve deemed “blue balls” is epididymal hypertension—and it does, indeed, refer to pain in the scrotum caused by prolonged sexual arousal without ejaculation. And often, in such cases, balls will swell or feel “full” and—you guessed it—turn an ever-so-slight shade of blue.
That said, it’s not exactly a life or death scenario. You see, when a man is aroused, blood vessels rush towards his testicles, ultimately leading to a good ‘ol fashioned hard-on. Maintaining that hard-on for a prolonged amount of time without release (read: orgasm)—and thus a decrease in arousal—can certainly cause discomfort. But typically, the condition does not manifest in overwhelming pain. It’s more like a mild unpleasantry. And if it does cause some kind of excruciating sensation, doctors recommend exploring other underlying symptoms that may be causing scrotum pain.
More importantly, the only solution to said ball-engorgement is not merely hyperbolic, erotic orgasm. In fact, many doctors attest to the fact that blue balls will actually go away on their own. So no, they’re not a valid reason to demand follow-through on the ‘ol orgasm agenda. In fact, typically a cold shower, a nap, an Advil, or some quick masturbation will get the job done.