When it comes to partnered sex, it’s not always easy for women to have an orgasm. In fact, surveys have found that only 25% of women orgasm all the time, compared to men who manage to finish 90% of the time. That leaves a whopping 75% of women who either don’t climax every time or simply don’t have that fireworks moment at all.
Things like stress and societal expectations definitely don’t do women any favors in the orgasm department. A 2018 study published in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy found that out of the 913 women surveyed, 58% said they don’t orgasm due to stress and anxiety. And then when you add in other factors, like health issues, a busy schedule, and relationship problems, it can make it even more difficult.
If you’ve been struggling to orgasm, the best thing to do is check in with yourself. Consider if it is anxiety or a health issue. You could even head to your doctor to ask a few questions. And then, of course, you should always talk to your partner. Chatting about sex is the tiniest bit awkward, but it’s essential that they know so they can put you at ease.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at daily habits that could affect your orgasm.
1. Skipping Out On Adequate Sleep
A 2015 study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine found that getting sufficient sleep — which is usually between seven and nine hours per night — is an important factor in healthy sexual desire and genital response during sex. And yet, chances are you aren’t getting enough rest. According to the Sleep Foundation, 70 million Americans struggle with sleep problems, with women being more prone to issues like insomnia.
2. Eating Cheese
Although it’s unfair to point a finger at cheese, much of the cheese that Americans consume is derived from cow's milk full of synthetic hormones, according to EatThis, which is no good for orgasms as they can potentially mess with your hormones. If you’re a cheese lover, it may be worth it to cut back for a while and see if you start having better results in bed.
3. Riding A Bike
There are so many good reasons to ride a bike. Cycling is a way to get exercise on your way to and from work, take in the local scenery, and reduce your carbon footprint. However, riding a bike also has the potential to mess with your orgasms.
A 2012 study by Texas A&M Health Science Center found that when women ride bikes with the handlebars lower than the seat for more than 10 miles a week, it puts the body on an angle that may lead to loss of feeling in the vaginal area.
Due to the pressure being applied to that part of your body, it can cause pelvic floor damage over time. But don’t let that scare you away from your ride. Just know that it’s best for women to peddle in a more upright position, which you can easily do by adjusting your handlebars.
4. Feeling Bad About Yourself
According to Psychology Today, having a “critical inner voice” could interrupt your natural progression of sexual excitement — and thus your orgasm. Of course, it’s tough to turn off inner thoughts and even harder to magically replace them with positives ones. But if you feel bad about yourself, struggle with low self-esteem, or get “in your head” during sex, consider talking to a therapist — or even a friend — and work on boosting yourself up.
5. Holding Things In
Branching off of that, having a tendency to hold things in might literally hold you back in bed. According to a 2017 study published in the journal Socioaffective Neuroscience & Psychology, the key to more frequent orgasms lies in mental and relationship factors, including orgasm importance, sexual desire, sexual self-esteem — and openness to communication with partners.
6. Drinking Lots Of Coffee
While coffee may be what gets you through the day, that same jolt of energy can make it difficult to relax — sometimes to the point you struggle to orgasm. If you can’t relax sufficiently and get into a groove, having an orgasm won’t be easy. So maybe cut back on the coffee to only three a day instead of five, and see if you’re able to finish in bed.
David L. Rowland, Laura M. Cempel & Aaron R. Tempel (2018): Women's Attributions Regarding Why They Have Difficulty Reaching Orgasm, Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy, DOI: 10.1080/0092623X.2017.1408046
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Kontula, O. (2017). Pl-28 determinants of female sexual orgasms. The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 14(5). doi:10.1016/j.jsxm.2017.04.099
Gould, R. (2016, November 19). 5 Foods That Prevent Orgasm – Do You Eat these? Retrieved March 10, 2021, from https://www.yogiapproved.com/health-wellness/5-foods-prevent-orgasm-eat/
Partin, S. N., Connell, K. A., Schrader, S., LaCombe, J., Lowe, B., Sweeney, A., . . . Guess, M. K. (2012). The bar sinister: Does handlebar level damage the pelvic floor in female cyclists? The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 9(5), 1367-1373. doi:10.1111/j.1743-6109.2012.02680.x
7 Factors Affecting Orgasm in Women. (2014, April 28). Retrieved March 10, 2021, from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-human-experience/201404/7-factors-affecting-orgasm-in-women
Kalmbach, D., Arnedt, J., Pillai, V., & Ciesla, J. (2015, March 16). The impact of sleep on female sexual response and behavior: A pilot study. Retrieved March 10, 2021, from https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jsm.12858
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