Demystifying the Big O: Does It Exist?

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Anatomy of an Orgasm

To understand the orgasm, you must first learn about the female anatomy. The clitoris, located on the outside of the body, and the vagina play a key role in the female orgasm. While stimulating other areas of the body, such as the breasts, may result in arousal, special attention must be paid to the genitals in order to reach climax.

During foreplay and intercourse, you may begin to feel lightheaded; this is because of a rush of blood to your clitoris and vagina. Next, your vagina walls will begin to secrete lubrication to prepare for penetration. As you become more aroused, blood will continue to flow to your pelvis, your vagina will narrow, your breathing will speed up, and your heart rate will increase.

The orgasm occurs when the muscle and nerve tension in the pelvis, genitals, and thighs is released all at once in a series of waves. You may feel a number of contractions in the vagina, uterus, and anus; 3 to 5 contractions for a small orgasm and 10 to 15 for a large climax.

Your brain may also be affected by an orgasm, as researchers at the Netherland's University of Groningen have found that parts of the brain that control emotion and fear switch off during climax.