Orgasm: Understanding The Big "O"
Updated: Jun 17
Have you ever wondered what happens when we orgasm?
In the simplest terms, orgasm is the sudden, involuntary release of sexual tension. Many parts of the body are involved in orgasm, including the contraction of various muscles, increased brain activity, increased heart rate, and blood flow to the genitals.
While every woman’s description of what an orgasm feels like will likely be different (despite the fact they are the same), most women describe an intense feeling of sexual pleasure followed by the sensation of tension release.
Why is orgasm a complicated issue?
While the definition of an orgasm is straightforward enough, it becomes much more complex when we look at what leads to an orgasm, and the factors that can derail one.
The most complicating factor is context. Yes, context matters, a lot.
Have you ever noticed that, on some occasions, your partner’s gentle touch can send you into erotic bliss? While other times you want to swat their hand away?!
That’s probably because of context - what mood you're in...if you're irritated with your partner...how stressful your day has been! All of these, and more, can impact our ability to reach orgasm and the quality of orgasm.
The factors that impact sexual arousal might not even have anything to do with the stimulation we may be experiencing! There are a whole host of factors that can influence our experience of pleasure in any given moment, for example, feeling insecure in our body or having work stress playing at the back of our minds.
What’s a normal orgasm?
Let's be clear, there is no ‘normal’ orgasm.
Every woman’s body is unique and may change over time and situation. Unlike men, every woman experiences pleasure and sexual arousal in their own unique way. And there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ orgasm. They are just varying experiences of pleasure and sensations in the body coming from female arousal triggers.
Orgasms can happen from a range of stimulation - in fact, some women experience orgasms during exercise, or in their sleep.
Believing there is a normal can lead to feeling pressure - and feeling pressure is one of the biggest impediments to sexual pleasure, including orgasm.
Common blockers for achieving an orgasm
Failing to reach orgasm is often due to factors that ‘turn down’ or interrupt our experience of sexual arousal, or what we call sexual inhibitors. These can be anything from worries and stress, and mood to location, as well as environmental factors.
The frustration of not reaching orgasm can also place pressure on ourselves to reach orgasm, in turn, decreasing the likelihood of staying in the moment to reach higher levels of sexual arousal, which ultimately culminate in orgasm.
There is also a common misconception that women can orgasm through penile-vaginal intercourse. When in reality - studies show just 15% of women experience orgasm from penile thrusting in the absence of direct clitoral stimulation.
These are to name just a few!
If you are looking for more detail on what might be derailing your orgasm, and guidance in how to overcome orgasm dysfunction - download the Lover App today and check out our goals 'Orgasm 101' and 'Climaxing Consistently' for personalized courses and expert guidance.