Do you feel some soreness down there? It is nothing peculiar. Every male experiences pain in his testicles at some point in his life. There could be many reasons why your balls hurt. One of them could be minor injuries in that area. Blunt trauma causes nearly 85 per cent of testicular injuries, according to experts.

Testicles are a few of the most important body parts of men. After all, they produce sperm and secrete testosterone, the key male sex hormone that affects everything in men from the reproductive system and sexuality to muscle mass and the growth of body hair. If the pain is due to testicular infections such as epididymitis, orchitis, testicular trauma, and testicular torsion, it can be a cause for alarm.

The two oval-shaped male sex glands located behind the penis are called testes.The testes rest in a pouch of skin called the scrotum. One of the most common causes of pain in the scrotum is epididymitis – inflammation of the epididymis. It is the coiled tube at the back of the testicle that stores and carries sperm. It gets inflamed when infected from sexually transmitted infections or STIs such as gonorrhoea or chlamydia, urinary tract infections, or prostate infections, among other sources of bacterial contamination.

Men with epididymitis may experience low-grade fever, tenderness or pain and swelling in the testicles, painful urination, discomfort in the lower abdomen or pelvic area, pain during urination, urgent and frequent urination, abnormal penile discharge, and blood in the semen. The diagnosis includes STI screening, urine and blood tests and ultrasound.

Epididymitis can be treated with antibiotics, bed rest, supporting the scrotum with an athletic strap, applying ice packs and taking pain medication.

Orchitis is the inflammation of one or both the testes, and in most cases, spreads to the testicle through the bloodstream. A viral or bacterial infection is generally the root cause of this inflammation. Orchitis caused by a bacterial infection commonly develops from the progression of epididymitis. Men who have orchitis, have a quick onset of pain in one or both testicles that may appear tender, swollen, and red. Other symptoms include high fever, nausea, vomiting, pain in urination, groin pain, and pain during intercourse.

Epididymitis and orchitis are commonly seen in men between 14 and 35 years of age. Testicular torsion typically affects males between the ages of 10 and 20. This happens when a testicle twists, causing the cord that supplies blood to the scrotum to twist with it. The reduced blood flow causes severe and sudden pain, as well as swelling. This condition requires immediate surgery to restore blood flow to the testicles. Testicular torsion can be diagnosed by urine tests, physical examination and imaging of the scrotum.

So if you have discomfort down there, delaying a medical examination is not worth the risk.

Also, once you know what your testicles normally look and feel like, you can better spot any changes with self-examination. Therefore, checking your testicles every month is a simple, quick way to keep your testicles healthy.