The one question I'm asked pretty much every day as a sex therapist and relationship expert turned neuroscientist is how to keep desire alive. Good news? Cultivating the pleasures of an oral sex orgasm can be a delightful way to ignite and reignite passion over the long haul.

In a recent column we explored how the juiciest lust-filled type of sexual desire tends to wane after the honeymoon period, fuelled by potent brain-chemical aphrodisiacs, fizzles out. But research shows that receiving oral sex more frequently helps people in longer-term relationships maintain more passion and experience higher levels of sexual satisfaction overall.

1. Learn more about your pleasure pathways.

The first step in finding the way to any orgasm is learning what pleases you. Obviously, you’re not going to perform oral sex on yourself to test-drive the experience, but there are other ways to get a good lay of the land. Take matters into your own hands and explore your own pleasure wiring starting with your clitoris—ground zero for oral sex. By understanding the workings of your own erotic anatomy, you'll be better able to wire those important pathways to your brain's pleasure centres.

2. Jump-start the mind-body pleasure engine.

One of the best ways to increase the power of the many pleasures of any sexual experience is to make sure you aren't starting from square one. Move slowly and be patient in establishing a head-space for sensual pleasure. Also, use the power of physical arousal to kindle your sexual appetite. Before launching into cunnilingus, use other methods first—like asking your partner to manually massage your clitoris or apply pressure to your clitoral bulbs before launching into oral pleasures. By making sure you are aroused, the sensations of oral sex will be even more exquisite.

3. Communicate enthusiastically and loudly.

If something feels good, make lots of noise. If something doesn't, communicate that too. In the realm of sex, feedback is our best friend. Grunts and sighs and moans work. You can also use words: "That feels great"; "Go faster (or slower or harder or softer)"; or "Move a bit up (or down)."

4. Talk with your body.

Use plenty of nonverbal, physical prompts by moving your body or gently adjusting your partner's head or hand to where you want it most. If you feel awkward about doing this, before you head to bed for some head, open up a conversation about what works and what could work better. You can even explore in advance how your partner would prefer to get feedback when in the midst of pleasing you.

5. Move your body.

The tendency many women have when they are trying to orgasm, either during masturbation, oral sex, or intercourse, is to rigidly tense up their body. Some muscle tension—aka myotonia—goes along with sex and can contribute to orgasm. But there's also too much of a good thing. Too much muscle tension restricts blood flow, which can actually interfere with orgasm. One way to increase the chances of having an orgasm is to find a way to rock your pelvis gently and rhythmically using small movements that don’t disrupt the action but keep blood flowing to your genitals.

6. Breathe.

Here's a hot tip from tantra: An excellent way to maximise pleasurable sensations is to use your imagination. When you breathe in, imagine the breath (and sexual energy) flowing into and up your body. Then when you exhale, imagine the breath (and sexual energy) flowing down and out though your genitals. More oxygen helps. So does using the power of your imagination to amplify the sensations. (I actually published a study showing that just thinking about genital stimulation did wonders for the brain's pleasure centres.)

7. Kegel, Kegel, Kegel.

In real estate the saying is "Location, location, location." In sex therapy it's all about a different kind of real estate: the valuable territory of the floor of the pelvis and the power of those muscles, when exercised regularly, to promote orgasmic capacity. Do your Kegels. They work.

8. Forget about chasing the orgasm—let it find you.

Focus on the sensations. Let go of the orgasm as a goal. By focusing on sensations, you will savour the experience and allow the orgasm to find you. And even in cases when the big O proves elusive, you can get great satisfaction from savouring the experience as is.

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