Island Sexual Health Society Be informed, not surprised!

Human sexual responses

2006 June 08

Find out the basics about:

* “Arousal”:#arousal
* “Orgasm”:#orgasm
* “Resolution”:#resolution

h3(#arousal). Arousal

Arousal is the first part of sexual pleasure, when a person is becoming sexually excited. This arousal can be stimulated by visual images, touch, etc.

*In a female* these physical changes occur during arousal:

* her vagina becomes lubricated
* her vagina expands
* her clitoris becomes erect and larger
* her nipples may become erect
* her skin may become flushed
* her heart and breathing rates increase

*In a male* these physical changes occur during arousal:

* his penis becomes erect
* his testes elevate
* his scrotum thickens
* his nipples may become erect
* his heart and breathing rates increase

h3(#orgasm). Orgasm

Orgasm is an intense, pleasurable feeling during which the body’s muscles experience a series of contractions and then relax. It is the peak of sexual arousal, and is also called the climax.

Not all sexual experiences result in orgasm.

In men, ejaculation is generally but not always accompanied by orgasm.

h3(#resolution). Resolution

After an orgasm, the body relaxes; this is called resolution.

A man is unable to have an erection for anywhere between a few minutes to a few days after orgasm; this is called the refractory period.

A woman experiences no refractory period and is therefore able to have multiple orgasms.