Lately, when I change my 1-year-old son's
diaper, he reaches for his penis. Is that normal? Is that
Many concerned parents call their doctors because their kids
touch their genitals during diaper changes or their baby boys have
frequent erections. They're reassured that these behaviors are
perfectly normal - even the youngest children naturally explore
How you react - your voice, the words you use, your facial
expressions - is one of your child's first lessons in
sexuality. By responding without anger, surprise, or disapproving
words, you teach your child that this curiosity about his body is
just a normal part of life. Toilet teaching is another great
opportunity to reinforce accepting attitudes about your child's
For more information, check out this article:
Understanding Early Sexual Development
Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: January 2007
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