4 ways you could increase your chances of having an orgasm

CBS Television DistributionHollywood sex scenes make having an orgasm seem like a breeze when, in reality, it’s not.

Hollywood sex scenes make having an orgasm seem like a breeze but, in reality, consistently reaching climax during sex can be difficult – if not impossible – for some.

A 2015 Cosmopolitan survey of 2,300 women between the ages of 18 and 40 found that only 57% of women reported having orgasms “most or every time” they had sex with a partner. Additionally, 27% of those surveyed said they faked an orgasm in order to end the sex because they knew they weren’t going to orgasm.

Although there is no perfect equation for achieving an orgasm during sex, there are ways to increase your likelihood of climaxing. “Generally, an inability to orgasm tends to be due to a lack of clitoral stimulation, inhibitors like anxiety and body image, or lack of self-esteem,” sex and relationship therapist Ian Kerner told INSIDER. Confronting those roadblocks, however, could lead to a more satisfying sex life filled with orgasms.

Here are four ways you could increase your chances of orgasming during sex.

Ask for more clitoral stimulation

For many people, vaginal stimulation isn’t enough to reach orgasm. Only 15% of Cosmopolitan’s sex survey respondents said they were able to orgasm through vaginal stimulation alone, while 20% said they needed both clitoral and vaginal stimulation, 12% needed oral sex, and 9% needed their partner’s hand to reach orgasm.

Sextrumzz/ iStockFor many people, vaginal stimulation isn’t enough to reach orgasm.

According to Kerner, “a lot of women say they don’t get enough arousal through foreplay,” so incorporating clitoral stimulation, one form of foreplay, may help.

In an interview with Health magazine, Debra Herbenick, PhD, a sexual health educator from the Kinsey Institute, said the outer part of the clitoris known as the glans has about 8,000 nerve endings (twice as many as the penis), so stimulating that area can lead to large amounts of pleasurable sensations.

Take your meditation practice inside the bedroom

The brain is often overlooked when it comes to its sexual function, but according to Kerner, it plays just as important a role as the genitals. “Some women find that it’s hard to turn off stress, anxiety, or that part of themselves that is worried about stuff,” he said. If you catch your mind wandering during sex, it could be a sign you need to exercise mindfulness in the bedroom.


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Bedroom mindfulness doesn’t happen overnight, but with practice, it can help a person zone in on the moment. To do this, Kerner recommended focusing on each body sensation you feel during foreplay and sex, and touching your partner to feel more grounded.

Try role-playing to distract yourself

If you still have trouble staying in the moment, Kerner said adding unexpected elements could help distract you from your racing thoughts.

“Role-playing, sharing a fantasy, or engaging in kinky behaviour is something some people find really enjoyable and they often lose themselves in these face-to-face interactions,” he said.


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Even if you’re not ready to act out your fantasies with your partner, Kerner said simply describing the fantasies to each other can be enough to get you out of your mind and focused on reaching orgasm.

Give yourself compliments

Another way to feel more present during sex is to be comfortable in your own body. Giving yourself little compliments can boost your self-confidence and make your time in the bedroom more carefree.

A 2016 study in Socioaffective Neuroscience and Psychology found that women who had higher self-esteem also had more frequent orgasms. Your self-love meter won’t raise overnight, but practicing appreciation for yourself and your body can help your feel more excited about sex over time.

Above all else, communicate with your partner

Couple cuddling in bedShutterstock‘Turn your partner into an ally rather than struggle with desperation,’ Kerner said.

Kerner said the best thing you can do to enjoy sex and increase your chance of orgasming is to communicate openly and often with your partner. “Turn your partner into an ally rather than struggle with desperation hoping they will guess [what you want],” Kerner said. That could mean sharing a sex-related insecurity, explaining something they did previously that you didn’t like, or describing something you do like.

“If you can lead with vulnerability instead of fear or anxiety people can respond to that positively,” Kerner said.

If you find yourself dealing with body dysmorphia or other serious body-image issues, however, Kerner said talking with a therapist is the best option, as they have professional training and experience in dealing with these issues.

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