Solving the Mystery of the Female Orgasm

Having trouble getting off? It’s time to turn to science to figure out how to reach the big “O”.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel
Having trouble getting off? It’s time to turn to science to figure out how to reach the big “O”.
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An orgasm is a signal from the nerves in the vagina or clitoris, via the spinal cord to the brain. It’s one of the few moments you can totally lose control of your brain and nervous system. It results in the production of oxytocin, also known as the “cuddle hormone”, and can reduce pain while increasing your heart rate, blood pressure and perspiration.
Stress is not sexy
Ironically, when it comes to getting it on, the brain can also be your own worst enemy. Thanks to work or any kind of stress, it’s sometimes hard to “get out of our heads” and this makes it almost impossible to get excited or turned on.
It’s (not) a man’s world
Many women also prefer to let the man take the lead – and because they might not know what to do, it can lead to all sorts of frustrations on both sides. To make matters worse, many women don’t know what turns them on or how to pleasure themselves. Clinical sexologist Dr Martha Lee says, “What women don’t realise is that self-pleasure is good. It creates pathways to the brain the more they try it. So it might seem hard at first, but it isn’t impossible.”
How to do you
If you’re having trouble climaxing, the worst thing you can do is let that stress you out. “Don’t adopt the attitude: ‘I have to try harder,’” says Dr Martha. “It’s more about slowing down and asking yourself: ‘Am I giving myself joy?’” Learning how to be more mindful through activities like meditation and yoga can also help... and there’s no harm in getting your partner in on the experimenting! 

Dr Martha’s top 4 tips to getting off

Here’s what needs to be done to get you in the zone.
Be responsible for your own pleasure.
If you haven’t already, find your clitoris! The fleshy knob sits above the vagina and has 8,000 nerves – double that of a man’s penis.
It helps you find out what turns you on. Give it a try in the shower. Don’t give up If you’re still having trouble, try to relax and keep trying. As with all things, practice makes perfect.