Urethral Sounds are genuine medical instruments designed for insertion into the urethra, the thin tube connecting the bladder with the outside world. They are highly polished stainless steel rods with a handle and a rounded tip, and they come in sizes which are very close to each other, differing in diameter by less than half a millimeter. In a medical setting, their purpose is to gradually and gently enlarge the urethra. In a non-medical setting they can be a source of exceptional sexual stimulation and an instrument used in power exchange or submission/domination/SM experiences.

The name 'sound’ is used in the sense of 'to find the depth of'’ in the same way a lead weight on a line is used by mariners to sound the depth of the water.

This page only covers male sound play: This is also known to some as cock stuffing. Women's sounds are shorter, for the shorter urethra, differently shaped and have their own difficulties of insertion. Women are also even more prone to infection. Some of this article may be of relevance and interest to women, but the technical aspects are largely inapplicable. Certainly sounds intended for use on women should not be used on men, and vice versa.

A word of caution: Urethral Sound play is not something you should engage in with someone who is inexperienced or who does not understand all the necessary precautions. Carelessness can result in infection or injury. You should be introduced to this kind of play in the right setting by an experienced, careful person who cares enough about you to exercise all the cautions set forth herein. Having said that, do not be terrified unless you have reason. There may be pleasures here which you have yet to discover!

The Urethral Sounds: There are two types of sounds in common use, named after their inventors.

Van Buren sounds are about 30cm (11.5") long and are J-shaped: there is a single curve near the tip.
Dittle sounds are straight, and about the same length. For men, avoid the S-shaped sound sometimes sold in sex shops: it is intended for women.

Which type is best is a matter of opinion. There is a curve in the male plumbing system; the J-curve on the Van Buren sound is designed to accommodate that curve, allowing the sound to slip down the penis and into the bladder easily. The problem is that if the bottom gets an erection during the process of insertion one has to wait until the erection subsides, as the curved sound cannot be inserted or removed if the penis is hard. It is possible to negotiate the curve with the straight Dittle sound by changing the angle of the penis during insertion, but this requires a bit more skill and sensitivity on the part of the top.

Urethral Sound Sizes: The diameter of sounds, catheters and some other medical instruments is expressed in the French system. One French unit (Fr) is .33 millimeters (.3mm for ease of discussion). Thus, an instrument which is 20Fr is 20 x .3 = 6mm in diameter (0.24").

Most men can, without any real discomfort, take a much larger sound than you might imagine. The idea, of course, is to stretch the urethra just a bit.

Purchasing Urethral Sounds: You should not spend money on purchasing Urethral Sounds until you have experienced them with a competent friend, someone who has the expertise to help you discover the best possible sensations without risk. This will also give you a chance to discover what sizes are right for you. In addition, no top should use them until he has experienced them for himself.  Urethral Sounds are expensive because of their precision sizing and careful finishing, and because they are not mass produced products.

Urethral Sound Sterility: Sterility is important in this procedure. Aside from the possibility of transmitting HIV, non-sterile procedures can cause bladder infections. Here is a good Urethral Sound cleaning technique:

After use, the sounds are washed in a hot water/detergent solution, since detergents remove surface lubricants such as SurgiLube Jelly and help break down viral coats.
The clean sounds are soaked in a bleach solution (1:10) for half an hour. The purpose of this step is specifically to kill the HIV virus. Use only a plastic or glass tray; a metal tray will cause a chemical/electrolytic reaction with the sounds in the presence of the bleach, and the sounds will discolor or corrode.
The sounds are rinsed, then wrapped in a clean hand towel tied loosely with thread or string.
The towel and the sounds are placed in a pressure cooker for 15 minutes at full pressure, the home equivalent of an autoclave. After processing, the bundle is kept in a plastic container until used again.

Other Equipment for Urethral Sound Play: As well as the Urethral Sounds themselves, you will need:

Generous amounts of sterile lubricant without preservative or nonoxynol-9, which is highly irritating to the urethra. SurgiLube Jelly is recommended.
A luer-tip hypodermic syringe without a needle, or, better,the type of hypodermic-syringe-like device used to administer medicine to babies, approximate size 10-12ml (cc).
An ordinary serving tray
A sterile, or at least freshly-washed, hand towel.
Alcohol and swabs or paper tissues.
Latex gloves.
A clean washcloth and antibacterial soap.

Before Beginning a Urethral Sounding Session: Have the bottom relax comfortably on his back on a fairly firm table or bed; being flat is better than being in a sling. If a bed is used, position the bottom diagonally, genitals at the very corner, legs spread and off the bed, so you can get very close to him. You will sit at the corner on a chair, facing him, his legs on yours. If the bottom is on a table, he will be conveniently close.

Wash the bottom's genitals with warm water and antibacterial soap; dry him gently. The objective is to remove surface bacteria.
Spread the towel on the tray; if you have used the sterilizing technique I described above, just open the bundle. The towel in which the sounds are wrapped is ideal.
Do Not touch the sounds except by their handles.
Arrange the sounds in order of size so that you do not have to fumble around one-handed later.
Fill the syringe with SurgiLube Jelly; try to avoid getting large bubbles in the syringe.
Put on the gloves; be careful what you touch after this point.
Using a tissue, scrub each of the sounds with alcohol to kill any bacteria or fungi from the air or inadvertent touching.

Urethral Sound Insertion Technique: The technique cannot be properly learned just by reading about it. This article only gives you an idea of what is involved and of the pleasures which are possible. It would be best for you to attend a demonstration to actually see the procedure, and work with an experienced top to try it out, whether you are a top or a bottom.

If you are right-handed, you will manage the instruments with your right hand; your left hand will hold the bottom's penis.

As you begin, examine the bottom's penis carefully; spread the opening gently. Estimate what is the largest size sound which will easily fit into the urethral opening. You want to begin with the largest size possible because larger sounds are less pointy and are more gentle as they slip in.

Place the tip of the SurgiLube Jelly syringe near the opening of the penis; put a small blob of SurgiLube Jelly right at the opening to lubricate the passage of the syringe into the tip of the penis. Hold the cock loosely, and gently place the tip of the syringe in the opening of the cock; squeeze in a generous amount of SurgiLube Jelly. Keep the syringe in place for a moment while you gently stroke the cock to prevent the SurgiLube Jelly from shooting out. Some men feel a bit of discomfort at this point, a slight burning at the tip of the cock. This is caused by a difference between the acid/alkaline balance of the lubricant and that of the tissues of the bottom. This sensation will pass within a minute and is nothing to worry about.

Holding the cock straight up at a 90-degree angle from the body, then gently insert the sound about an inch. Aim slightly toward the bottom side of the cock. The sound will have a tendency to slip in just by gravity alone. Your job is to hold it back and guide it. Don't push! If the sound stops slipping in, stretch the cock slightly by holding onto the loose skin; this will straighten out the urethra and allow the sound to find its way.

Never push a Urethral Sound in: Gravity is the only force used. Your job is merely to guide the sound and to prevent it from dropping in too suddenly; this is especially true until you have some experience with the technique.

When the sound has entered about an inch more than the length of the penis, change the angle of the penis: slowly lower it toward the testicles to form approximately a 45 degree angle; gradually raise it again. This will negotiate the curve and the sound will drop into the bladder. Guide the sound with gentle manipulation of the handle; don't push!

Remove the sound slowly You can move it in and out slowly if the bottom enjoys the sensation. The larger sizes of sound will tend to drop in more readily because of their greater weight.

Inject a bit more SurgiLube Jelly as before, and go on to the next larger size of Urethral Sound. Continue in this manner, going to larger sizes until the bottom feels discomfort. Always use plenty of lube. Most often, discomfort due to the size of the sound will be felt as slight burning at the tip of the cock. You can tell that you have reached the bottom's optimal size when the skin at the tip of the cock begins to stick to the sound during insertion and removal, even though well lubricated. The tissue forms a slight funnel shape as the sound is moved. Going to a larger size after this will actually stretch the urethra. It will then shrink back to its original size unless this treatment is done three or four times.

When you have removed the largest Urethral Sound you intend to use, gently milk the bottom's cock to remove some of the SurgiLube Jelly. Prepare the sounds to be cleaned and sterilized before subsequent use.

Does Urethral Sounding / Cock Stuffing Hurt: There is no real reason why the use of Urethral Sounds should be painful if the proper precautions are followed and the insertion and removal technique is good. Some bottoms may have been to an STD clinic to have a gonorrhea test; sometimes such tests involve swabbing out the tip of the penis with a Q-tip to get a sample of any fluids there. This can be an incredibly painful experience because cotton swabs are actually rough and the lack of lubrication makes it irritating. Memories of such experiences can cause bottoms to have far more fear than is justified.

When Urethral Sounds are used properly, the bottom experiences great pleasure when the sound is inserted to a certain depth. The top should gently manipulate the sound at that point; the sound is probably stimulating the prostate gland intensely, and in a way not possible through any other type of sexual technique.

Most bottoms enjoy watching the insertion, especially the sound gradually disappearing into the penis by its own weight. Many bottoms have expressed amazement that such a large object could go in so far without pain. They experience a sense of complete submission of their most intimate orifice and a ulnerability beyond any previous sub / dom experience.

If Urethral Sounds are used correctly, with plenty of lubrication and without exceeding the appropriate size for the bottom, there should be no real pain. There may be some initial discomfort which will give way to great pleasure after the first few anxious moments.

There may be some small discomfort afterward, especially if there has been stretching of the urethra. There may be a slight burning during urination, caused by irritation of the urethral tissues. This will pass within 24 hours, but the bottom should remember to drink a lot of fluids to keep the system well flushed out.

Health and Safety Problems of Urethral Sounding / Cock Stuffing: What if the bottom feels extreme discomfort even with just the injection of the initial lubrication? This is extremely rare, and it is probably a form of hysteria. Maybe such men should not engage in this sort of cock play. Or maybe they have a hang up about something being inserted up their cock. In a medical setting, it is customary to anaesthetize the penis before sounds are employed. This is definitely not recommended in a sexual setting because pain is an indicator that either the technique is faulty or the Urethral Sound has gone in far enough.

Constrictions in the Penis: If the Urethral Sound easily fits through the opening of the penis but will not pass further when it is inserted an inch or two, the likely cause is a band of scar tissue caused by a previous bout of gonorrhea. This scar tissue in the urethra doesn't stretch easily. In this case use smaller sizes of Urethral Sounds which will pass this constriction easily. There are many tiny capillaries which surround the urethra, blood vessels finer than a hair. When capillaries are stretched, they will sometimes leak a few blood cells. These tinge the lubricant a light pink. This is not something to worry about. But it is a good sign that you should probably stop for this cock stuffing session and resume another day.

Bleeding During Urethral Sounding: A flow of red blood is a serious danger sign. It indicates the possibility of damage, and you should cease all cock play immediately. If there is more than a brief dribble of red blood, head for the emergency room.
 an extremely unlikely event, however.

Urethral Sounding and Masturbation: Bottoms often have a strong urge to masturbate when a sound has been inserted. This must be avoided because of the likelihood of injury. Bottoms often want the top to be more vigorous in insertion. This is a time when the top needs to be responsible and in control, and do only what is good for the bottom. The insertion of Urethral Sounds produces such unusual and erotic feelings for some people that they need a good top to control their behavior.

Infection is the most likely complication from Urethral Sounding: Follow the procedures rigorously. Shortly after your session, the bottom may have a strong urge to urinate. However, there may be only a little urine. This suggests only that you have stimulated the nerves which signal a full bladder. The bottom should drink a lot of fluids to flush out any potential bacteria. There may be a slight burning sensation upon urination for the first 12 to 24 hours. This signals only that you have slightly irritated the urethra. But if the burning continues, or if there is a strong need to urinate which continues for more than 24 hours, there may be a bladder infection.

If infection does occur, it can be unpleasant, but is rarely a problem if medical help is sought and it normally responds well to antibiotics. The symptoms, normally developing within a couple of days of play, include -

discomfort in the bladder,  
A constant urge to piss,
cloudy urine,
feverishness or a feeling of being under the weather.

Visit a doctor or a genito-urinary / STD clinic. Forget your embarrassment and tell them what the most likely cause is. Don't put off going, because they have seen it all - and much worse - before. Infections can cause serious problems if allowed to take hold. Make sure you're fully recovered before indulging in sound play again, and indeed any other sort of urethral or piss play.
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