The decision of whether or not to circumcise my baby boy was one that I did not struggle with in the least. My husband and I never once considered not doing it, because we always thought it was an issue of personal hygiene.
Honestly, I just assumed that most people chose to have their sons circumcised unless there was some strong religious reason why they were against it. But I was actually surprised when I learned that plenty of parents choose not to circumcise their babies based on either medical or ethical concerns. It's a touchy subject, and I've "overheard" some conversations about the topic on Facebook that have gotten pretty heated to say the least.
There are many people who go back and forth over whether or not to circumcise, but for parents who are a bit on the fence about the decision, there is now another good reason why circumcising your baby is a positive thing -- it may protect him from getting cancer down the road.
New research has shown that men who have a circumcision performed before their first sexual experience also have a 15 percent lower rate of prostate cancer than those who either had the procedure done after their first sexual encounter, or who are uncircumcised. The link between prostate cancer and circumcision is present because men who are circumcised are less likely to get sexually transmitted diseases like herpes and HPV, both of which elevate the risk of getting prostate cancer.
This news probably isn't enough to change someone's mind who is strongly against circumcision, especially if their reasoning against having it done is because they think it should be a personal decision -- not something we choose for our babies. However, for parents who are weighing all of the positives and negatives to having their baby boy circumcised, knowing that they are potentially protecting their child from suffering an illness down the road is definitely a plus. I just don't see how doing something to give our kids a leg up on their future health can be seen as anything but good.
Did you struggle with the decision to have your baby circumcised?
Image via nanny snowflake/Flickr
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