Can Orgasms Relieve Period Pain?
Do you pop pills or hug a water bottle when you have your period? Maybe you just lay in bed and feel sorry for yourself.
Either way, period pain is common. Research shows that anywhere between 16-91% of women report pain during their periods at some point in their life. And, it sucks. But you know what would suck less? Orgasms on your period.
Wait. What? Can you actually orgasm on your period? Yes. You can, and we’re going to tell you all about it, including how it can be the ultimate pain relief.
Orgasming during your period
While some women report an increased sex drive when they are on their periods, we know that the thought of getting down and dirty when you’re bleeding isn’t for everyone.
But Mother Nature, in all her wisdom, might be onto something here. Right before menstruation, estrogen and progesterone levels drop. After the first days of your period, estrogen starts to rise again and progesterone is still low. This promotes libido and desire.
And, if you act on your urges, you may find that your hot water bottle is no longer needed!
Why do orgasms help period cramps?
When you orgasm, you release a burst of endorphins including serotonin and dopamine, also known as the “feel-good” hormones. These hormones act as a natural painkiller and boost your pain tolerance. When you orgasm during your period, you can actually alleviate pain with your own natural drugs!
Orgasms also increase blood flow to your uterus and this can help relieve period cramps. It can even help get rid of stress, enhance relaxation and help you sleep better. Sign me up, please!
Read more about how stress affects your period.
And it’s not just sex. Masturbation will produce the same effect as long as you have an orgasm.
Scientists still don’t fully understand every role that endorphins play in our body, but we do know that they’re vital in reducing pain and promoting pleasure.
Orgasms could also lead to better sleep
If you regularly take melatonin to help you sleep, you might want to consider a more pleasurable alternative: orgasms. In addition to releasing oxytocin, which can create a sedative effect when its initial rush wears off, an orgasm also releases a chemical called prolactin. This hormone is linked to feelings of sleepiness. Plus, sex can be cardiovascular – and even a strength activity, depending on the position! So, if you really go for it, it’s normal to feel ready for a rest after!
Can you have sex on your period?
Despite the fact that sex on your period has been a long-standing taboo, the answer is yes, you can have sex when you have your period.
There’s no reason why you should avoid sex (or masturbation) when you’re menstruating (unless of course, you just don’t feel like it!)
But a word of warning: you can still contract an STI or get pregnant, even when you’re on your period, so period sex is not an excuse to skip protection!
If you want to minimize the mess
Masturbating or having sex during your period can be a bit messy. So, you need to plan ahead to avoid turning your bed into a crime scene.
Use a menstrual cup or discs
While it may not be immediately obvious, some menstrual products can actually be left in during penetration. Menstrual discs and cups sit higher up in the body (on the cervix) which blocks blood from trickling down to where anything (penis, vibrator, finger, etc!) is going to go.
Some people even report that sex with a menstrual cup in is even more enjoyable because of the way it puts pressure on the G-spot. A word of warning though: menstrual products do not double as birth control and while not likely, it is still possible that you could get pregnant having sex while on your period.
Wear a tampon during foreplay
If you’re up for it, and your partner isn’t squeamish, try wearing a tampon and keeping it in during foreplay, and then remove it just before penetration. But remember to take it out. Wearing a tampon during penetrative sex can lead to health concerns!
Prioritise external stimulation
Here’s a novel idea: sex does not have to be penetrative! This is true for any day of your cycle, not just when you’re bleeding. Explore external stimulation. Use a vibrator, your fingers or even a feather or ice cube to stimulate different body parts. Have fun with it!
Try shower sex
If you’re worried about the aforementioned crime scene, take your business to the shower! Experts suggest bringing some lube into the shower. Even though showers are wet, water actually washes away your body’s natural lubrication which can make things a bit uncomfortable.
Embrace the mess
Finally, just embrace the mess! Get OK with your body’s natural fluids. It’s normal and natural and there’s nothing to be ashamed or embarrassed about!
The Power of the Big O
Are orgasms better on your period? We can’t say for sure, but the best way to find out is to give it a try! This post is all about orgasms and period pain, but orgasms in general are great for a variety of reasons. This study shows that orgasms can actually help relieve symptoms of stress.
Guud Expert Leen S adds:
“Pleasure is so healing, orgasms are super beneficial for your physical, mental AND emotional health, all of which are connected. For those of you who are fitness minded, sexual activity burns quite a few calories and boosts your metabolism. Regular sex improves your immune function, helps you to sleep better and reduces stress. Studies over many years have confirmed a correlation between regular sex and longevity. Our bodies produce a natural form of amphetamine (or “uppers”), called phenylethylamine (PEA). Too low PEA leads to depression. It is nicknamed the “romance hormone” because it is high during early romance, the so-called honeymoon phase that you might look back at with nostalgia. But here is good news: it also peaks with orgasm. You can get high on your orgasm AND feed the fire in your long-term relationship. The “anti-aging” hormone, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) protects the immune system and may lower cholesterol and you may have guessed it, it peaks at orgasm as well!
Testosterone, lastly, is the sex hormone with which you are likely most familiar. It is a potent contributor to sex drive in both women and men. It is increased by sexual thoughts and activity, a feedback loop similar to oxytocin’s. So … the more sexual thoughts or erotic activity that you have today, the more that you will want to have tomorrow. So if your libido is low … you now know what you can do about that.”
It’s important to note that orgasms change in intensity and sensation throughout your cycle. One week, your orgasm might be explosive and other times, it could be a little more subtle.
“This is related to your cycle but also to your emotional, energetic state AND your knowledge of your own body” says Leen.
“It is crucial to develop your body sensitivity. That way you can feel what you want & need: some days you might desire penetration quickly (during ovulation). I have seen, though, that most of the time women prefer long foreplay, slowness, warming up their ENTIRE bodies and not just rushing and focusing only on the vagina and penetration. In the Taoist tradition this is explained because as women we have a Yin core which means that we warm up slowly but … when we are warm, we can go for a long time. Oh yeah. A second element is your state of relaxation and surrender. This defines how deep you can sink into your own body and your orgasmic states.
Many women need to train themselves to open more and more to deeper orgasms, being able to stay focused on their own pleasure, letting go of control, and being wild. This requires self-pleasure practice, good communication with your partner and … safety.”
Our Guud expert Leen S concludes with the following:
“I would be careful tracking your orgasms because it can risk creating a hierarchy between orgasms (the good ones and less strong ones). I think it is very important that you celebrate every moment of pleasure your amazing body offers you. This is especially important because so many women are critical of their bodies, conditioned by high beauty standards. So, get curious about the different types of orgasms you can have and open your mind to include ALL sensations and experiences as erotically relevant. Indeed, there is more than our all-time favourite pleasure spaceship, the clitoris. Different orgasms such as: G-Spot, cervical, nipple, heart, throat, anus, full body … can shoot you into orgasmic heaven in so many powerful and different ways.
The bottom line is this: women have an incredible orgasmic potential. It is time for you to start tapping into that because it will make you more self-confident, happy and in love with yourself and life."
Still not convinced?
As if we need to give you more reasons to have sex, but if you’re still not feeling a little curious about the power of orgasms beyond the obvious immediate pleasure, here are six reasons to go wild:
- Orgasms (through sex or masturbation) are scientifically proven to help relieve pain.
- Orgasms can make you feel good and help boost your mood through the release of endorphins.
- Orgasms could lead to better sleep.
- Orgasms when you’re on your period can be stronger and longer. Don’t believe us? Go on, surprise yourself!
- Orgasms can potentially shorten your cycle due to your uterus contracting.
- Orgasmic women have more self-confidence and feel more self-love!
- It’s fun! Do you need more of a reason?