Is Sounding Painful?

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The short answer to this question is yes. Urethral play, also known as sounding, can be painful if you aren’t careful or properly prepared. By taking time to research and prepare yourself for urethral play, you will be able to enjoy it with little to no pain at all. Keep on reading to learn more about urethral play and how to minimise pain.

Urethral Play in BDSM

Pain is an important aspect of BDSM. If you are engaging in urethral play to experience pain, it is important to learn how to safely engage in urethral play and understand your limits before you explore it with the intent of experiencing pain. Once you are experienced with sounding, you can start to experiment with it in a BDSM setting safely.

Causes of Pain When Sounding

There are a few common culprits that can make urethral play painful:


The biggest cause of pain is the size of your sound, pun intended. Urethral toys and sounds come in a wide variety of sizes, varying in length, diameter and shape. You will need to make sure that you pick sounds that are on the shorter and thinner side when starting out. This will get you used to what urethral play feels like, as well as learning how to get in touch with your body.

The length of your sound is more likely to cause discomfort than pain. Starting with a shorter sound or a penis plug will make you more familiar with these sensations, minimising discomfort.

The diameter of a toy is going to strongly affect the sensations caused by sounding, both good and bad. Thicker sounds will apply pressure to the nerve endings found inside the urethra, which can cause pleasure or pain depending on your level of experience. When starting out you must start with thin sounds to slowly stretch your urethra, as using one that is too thick can cause pain and injury when inserted.


Sounds also come in a variety of textures to enhance the experience. Sounds can be completely smooth, ribbed, or textured to resemble a screw to create different sensations when inserted into the urethra. Starting with completely smooth is recommended until you are more experienced with sounding as textured ones can be overwhelming for beginners, possibly even causing pain.

Correctly Inserting Sounds

How you insert your urethral toys is important when it comes to making sounding less painful. Properly lubricating your urethra and your toys is essential, as the urethra produces minimal amounts of lubrication to protect against bacteria found in urine. Keep your lube nearby so that you can easily apply more when you need to.

You will also need to be patient when inserting urethral toys. If you are having trouble inserting a sound, don’t try to force it in. If you can’t insert your sound with gentle pressure, you may need to apply more lube or try again with a smaller sound. People who are new to sounding will need to slowly stretch their urethra before they can start playing with bigger sounds safely. Penis plugs and thin sounds are great choices for beginners who are worried about experiencing pain.

Safety Considerations

  • You may feel sore after urethral play sessions, especially if you are a beginner. This is because the urethra is sensitive and not used to being stretched out. If this soreness regularly occurs, it may be a sign that you are being rough during sessions or are using thick sounds. Make sure that you wait for the soreness to subside before engaging in urethral play again.

  • Do not insert anything into your urethra that isn’t a toy specifically designed for sounding to prevent injuring yourself. Random objects may have rough or sharp edges, which can cut or cause abrasions in your urethra.

  • Make sure that everything you use is sterilised, including your lube and your hands. This will ensure that you do not introduce bacteria to your urethra, which can cause an infection.

  • Lubricate more than just the tip of your sound, as well as the inside of your urethra to make inserting toys smooth and painless. This can be achieved using a dental syringe without the needle (or something similar). Make sure that the edges are smooth before using it.

  • Some sounds can only be inserted when the penis is flaccid, which is also true for removing it as well. These types of sounds are usually long and curved, reserved for advanced use.

  • Stop your sounding session immediately if you experience strong pain, bleeding or any other bad symptoms. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with a doctor if you still experience symptoms after stopping, as you may require medical assistance.


The thought of experiencing pain in your penis can be daunting, but don’t let that get in the way of the unique sensations urethral play can bring. By properly preparing yourself for safe urethral play, you can enjoy sounding without having to worry about pain.