Orgasm, as per the American Psychological Association, is reaching “peak pleasure”. In men, it manifests as the sudden ejaculation of semen. While in women, it is said to be associated with rhythmic contractions of pelvic muscles due to the release of sexual tension. To many women, an orgasm is only what they’ve heard about, and is elusive as hell. But hey, the intrigue around the subject is as prevalent among researchers the world over, as it is among women. And so, we bring to you 5 study-based orgasm facts! After all, women deserve the right to equal pleasure.

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5 orgasm facts you ought to know!

1. The most effective sex position for an orgasm

Well, it may be the most mundane sex position, but the most ideal for straight women to hit the big O. According to a study by New H Medical, a private gynaecology facility in New York, the mighty missionary position, with the man on top, with a cushion positioned beneath the woman’s pelvis, is a win-win to maximise the climax.

The reason is increased blood flow to the clitoris! And just how did they arrive at announcing the missionary position pillow the best?

Well, researchers used an ultrasound scanner and observed a volunteer couple while they engaged in sex for 10 minutes in each of five common positions. These also included cowgirl, lotus, missionary minus a pillow and doggy style. Also, here are some orgasm tips you can use during sex!

2. This is the least effective position for orgasm

Dr Kimberley Lovie, who led the team of researchers at New H Medical, also deduced the least effective position for reaching an orgasm.

In comparison to the face-to-face postures such as missionary or lotus pose, the rear entrance position produces the least amount of direct clitoral touch, according to the expert. Therefore, it only “resulted in a minor rise in blood flow”, which is not enough for a woman to end up in an orgasm.

The best to the least effective sex position: 5 things science says about female orgasm
An orgasm is fulfilling!

3. Moaning is not a great measure for orgasm

Thanks to pop cultural references, we tend to think that orgasms involve a lot of moaning. The more the moan, the better the orgasm. But apparently, it’s just a myth, as per this study.

A group of University of Ottawa researchers looked at a variety of physical symptoms that women experience during orgasms. These included choppy/shallow breathing, increased blood pressure and heat flashes.

An Orgasm Rating Scale, one of the few self-report instruments used in orgasm research, was administered to the female subjects. The researchers note in their study, published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, that the factors included feelings of pleasure, ecstasy, emotional closeness, relaxation et al, but moaning was extremely uncommon.

As per researchers, it should not even be considered a measure of climax entirely, since it seems to be more of a voluntary reaction rather than something that just happens.

Sorry, dear men, since this means that if your partner is moaning during sex, it doesn’t truly imply that they’re about to orgasm.

If you want to know answers to some frequently asked questions on orgasm, watch this O-inspiring Health Shots interview with sexual health influencer Leeza Mangaldas.

4. Orgasm gap is for real

Dr Laurie Mintz, a professor at the University of Florida and author of the book ‘Becoming Cliterate: Why Orgasm Equality Matter’, is credited with coining the term orgasm gap. According to Mintz, the phrase refers to a consistent finding in scientific literature that shows when men have sexual encounters with cisgender women, the men are having substantially more orgasms than the women.

She mentions research conducted on 800 college students to support her claim, which found that males experience orgasms 91% of the time during sex whereas women only experience them 39% of the time. The number itself speaks volumes of the gap.

Also, the orgasm gap is greatest in hook-up sex and smallest in relationship sex, but it never completely closes, according to a later study.

Two reasons to blame are women being self-conscious about body image during sex, and how the unrealistic representation of sexual experience in mainstream and pornographic media. The gap widens due to expectations that a woman can climax from penetration alone, whereas that is far from the truth.

One of the facts about orgasm to note is that it involves the whole of it – foreplay, kissing, touching, cuddling, nibbling and more.

There is a need to value women’s right to equal pleasure as men when it comes to sex, guns Dr Mintz.

The best to the least effective sex position: 5 things science says about female orgasm
Spice up your sex life with a lubricant.

5. The most common reason why women find it hard to orgasm

A 2018 research published in the Journal of Marital Sex and Therapy reviewed the reasons why women believe it is difficult for them to orgasm during sex.

Of the 913 women (over 18 years of age) who were surveyed, 452 reported having orgasm issues. In 45 percent of these interactions, the women reported having trouble to hit climax. For 30% of women, it was challenging to climax practically every time they engaged in sexual activity.

After that, researchers evaluated the “degree of suffering” related to orgasm challenges by taking into account a variety of criteria, including age, background, lifestyle, relationship status, health history, and orgasm.

The causes behind difficulty were outlined as; lack of stimulation or arousal, not having enough time, negative body image, discomfort or irritability during sex, insufficient lubrication and medical issues.

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