What Science Says About Vaginal Orgasms, Because They May Increase Pain Threshold

When it comes to orgasms, and there is more than one kind, many people are skeptical about the vaginal orgasm. This stems from both experts arguing over the inner workings of the female body as well as the fact that many, if not most women, have never had a vaginal orgasm. It’s sort of like female ejaculation: If it’s never happened to you, you may just assume it doesn’t exist.

The vaginal orgasm isn’t unlike the clitoral orgasm, but it’s not exactly like it either. While the clitoris needs to be stimulated to achieve a clitoral orgasm, the magnificent G-spot, needs to be stimulated to reach a vaginal orgasm. In both cases, something needs to be stimulated in order for climax to be achieved, but the way they feel, according to women who are fortunate enough to have experienced both, is completely different. The vaginal orgasm, by all accounts, is a deeper orgasmic feeling, whereas the clitoral orgasm is a bit more on the surface.

Because scientists and sexperts can’t really agree on the vaginal orgasm, trying to get straight answers about it is a little tricky. There’s only so much research that has been done, and even with the research, there’s still a lot of questions that remain. But based on what has been discovered, here are seven things science has to say about vaginal orgasms.

1. The Existence Of The Vaginal Orgasm Is Still Debatable

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Although yours truly had a vaginal orgasm recently — or so I thought — depending on the expert you talk to, their existence is iffy. Even though 2012 research finally, after much speculation, determined that the vaginal and clitoral orgasms are “separate phenomena,” a French gynecologist claims that what’s categorized as vaginal is actually clitoral, in that it stimulates the inside of the clitoris as opposed to the small outer part. 

2. Vaginal Orgasms Stimulate Their Own Region In The Brain

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Adding to the confusion as to whether or not vaginal orgasms are an entire entity unto themselves, are findings from Rutgers University that show that when a woman experiences a vaginal orgasm the sensory brain area that’s activated is completely different than the one that’s activated during clitoral stimulation. These results came to be after the study scanned the brains of several women via an fMRI machine and found the responses to each orgasm affecting totally different parts of the brain.

3. Penis Size May Affect Vaginal Orgasms

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While one doesn’t need to have a large penis to be good in bed, research has found that length may be a necessary component to achieving vaginal orgasms. A September 2012 study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine found that women who experience vaginal orgasms the most are those who have sex with men who have longer penises. The thinking behind this is that a longer penis not only stimulates the entire inside of the vagina, but also stimulates the cervix, which could lead to a vaginal orgasm.

4. Women With Spinal Chord Injuries Report The Ability To Have Vaginal Orgasms

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Research of women who have had some sort of spinal chord injury, where the connection between the brain and clitoris has been severed, have reported they’re still able to orgasm, but that it’s from penetration. What this means is that despite the lack of proper nerve communication, vaginal orgasms can occur which, in many ways, is proof of the G-spot — another thing that some people doubt.

5. Psychologically Healthy Women Are More Likely to Experience Vaginal Orgasms

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Various studies by psychologists at the University of West Scotland have found that women who are more psychologically healthy are more prone to vaginal orgasms. Although the psychologist behind the study, Stuart Brody, is quick to point out that while this appears to be the case, it’s not meant to make a psychological judgment of those women who do not experience these elusive vaginal orgasms.

6. Vaginal Orgasms Increase Pain Threshold

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Orgasms are nature’s best painkiller. When a woman experiences an orgasm whatever pain she might be experiencing suddenly subsides. This isn't just because of hormones like oxytocin and dopamine that are released, but because her threshold, in general, increases. Research has found that when pleasure is derived from G-spot stimulation, aka a vaginal orgasm, a woman’s tolerance for pain jumps up to an astounding 107 percent.

7. The Vaginal Orgasm Is Fairly Obscure

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With its existence still being debated, penis size possibly attributing to them, and general confusion over the G-spot, the vaginal orgasm remains the orgasm, at least compared to the clitoral orgasm, that’s hard to come by. Research has found that 70 to 80 percent of women need clitoral stimulation to climax, which means only 20 to 30 percent are able to vaginally orgasm

In other words, if it hasn’t happened to you, you’re not alone  and you’re definitely in good company.

Images: Andrew Zaeh for Bustle; Giphy (7)

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