When it comes to good sex, women often play martyrs, at the expense of being deprived of the many physical benefits that come with it. Casual or not, sex plays a crucial role in our lives.
Women, especially, kid themselves that good sex is not important for a thriving relationship. For them, it’s more about staying connected to their partner. “I was in a relationship where my partner got aroused easily. Since I was taking too long to get into the mood, I started having sex for the sake of it; each time feeling empty and incomplete,” remembers 24-year-old writer Rachna Singh.
Emphasising the importance of foreplay, Aditi Acharya, consultant psychiatrist, Healthenablr India, says, “While 90 per cent of males experience an orgasm during intercourse, as many as 30 per cent of women have never experienced an orgasm in their lifetime. One reason for that is, the latter is not directly related to reproduction. Moreover, a woman takes a while to empty her mind and enter into the game. This could take anything between 15 to 40 minutes.”
Foot spa rituals and body massages are rejuvenating, but you cannot possibly engage in one every day, can you? In The Orgasms Answer Guide, sexologist Beverly Whipple cites a study done by psychologist Carol Rinkleib Ellison in 2000, in which Ellison interviewed 2,632 women between the ages of 23 and 90 and found that 39 percent of these women stimulated themselves in order to relax. Experts give credit to oxytocin. “When a woman hits the high spot, a feel-good hormone called oxytocin is released from the nerve cells in the hypothalamus into the blood stream. Oxytocin not only relieves stress, but also stimulates feelings of warmth and relaxation. It facilitates social bonding and strengthens relationships, “points out psychiatrist and sexologist Dr Shyam Mithiya.
B FOR BENEFIT
The big ‘O’ comes with a myriad of physical benefits too. It improves blood circulation to the organs in the pelvic cavity, speeds up the body’s natural detoxification process, increases fertility, improves memory, boosts infection fighting cells, promotes healthy oestrogen levels and protects against osteoporosis, heart disease and breast cancer. “However bad the day may have been, my husband and I ensure that the night ends well with good wine and intercourse. This act certainly beats popping an Asprin! Also, who needs makeup when you wake up with a natural post-coital afterglow?” quips 36-year-old language consultant Mugdha*. It is the best way to beat those Monday blues as it induces a sense of positivity. Endorphins, released during the process are natural pain relievers that alleviate headache, menstrual cramps as well as arthritis.
Remember the time when you made out with your crush at the bar and later flaunted an obvious glow? That’s thanks to the hormone DHEA (Dehyrdoepiandrosterone). An increase in DHEA released during the act restores skin, repairs damaged tissues and keeps it looking radiant. It also strengthens the bones and muscles. There have been ample studies to show that people who had intercourse at least three times a week looked 10 years younger.
So what if your couch potato boyfriend fails to arouse you or your long-distance lover is not a phone sex per son or you’re just single? “Seducing yourself doesn’t mean scattering rose petals all over your bed. It could be anything low-maintenance to get you in the mood. Think aroma therapy candles and the like. Dim the lights, shut your eyes and let your imagination run wild,” shares sex coach Anindita Sen.
CROSSING THE FINISH LINE
Films portray women as being in a constant state of sexual ecstasy. But in reality, only 20 per cent of women orgasm through penetrative sex. “The rest 80 percent women need other methods like clitoris stimulation, oral sex and vaginal stimulation. Multiple orgasms are quite rare and they can be reached only if the partner is extremely skilled,” says Dr Mithiya. So can the absence of a good sex life affect your relationship? “Of course, you are entitled to your off days, but if you’re in a relationship, it’s important to communicate with your partner. If you’re not too comfortable being direct it’s best to tell him what works and what doesn’t with vocal cues,” says fitness trainer Shivani Joshi.
*Name changed on request
By – Priya Chaphekar