Orgasm and Hormones

In her latest book, ‘The Secret Pleasures of Menopause’, Dr Christian Northrup talks about the life force and the pleasure associated with orgasm. She describes how orgasm releases nitric oxide (the pleasure ‘hormone’) from the endothelial layer of the blood vessels. This invisible, odorless gas relaxes the walls of the blood vessels and can improve the entire body’s circulation. The drug Nitroglycerine eases chest pain associated with angina by releasing nitric oxide to increase blood flow to the heart. Similarly Viagra improves erections as nitric oxide increases penile blood flow.

Levels of this powerful neurotransmitter are diminished by obesity, smoking, poor eating habits, lack of exercises and high stress levels. Fun, pleasurable activities such as massage, a good movie, dancing and laughing with family and friends increase nitric oxide levels in the body. Orgasm and sex not only increase levels of this little miracle worker in the body, but improve pelvic floor muscle health by intense muscle contraction involved with the orgasmic response. Dr Helen O’Connell, an Australian Urologist describes how the upper ‘urethra and vagina are intimately related structures and form a tissue cluster that appears to be the locus of female sexual function and orgasm.’

During sexual arousal, the internal bulbs, legs, shaft and glans of the clitoris fill with blood and become firm. The PF muscles surround the legs and bulbs of the clitoris. These muscles contract producing the sensations of orgasm and directing blood flow to and from the clitoris.

The contractions of orgasm start in the smooth muscles of the fallopian tubes, uterus and glands surrounding the urethra, followed by contractions of voluntary muscles located in the pelvic floor, perineum and anal sphincter.

Researchers looked at what happened to women’s sexual dysfunction (loss of vaginal sensation, poor orgasm, pain, loss of urine with sex) after they completed a PF exercise program to improve their urinary continence. Women with low sexual desire or difficulty achieving orgasm reported improvement in their sexual function along with bladder control.

If your orgasm has lost some of its oomph, learn how to correctly strengthen your pelvic floor muscles to help restore your orgasm and increase levels of the little miracle worker, nitric oxide, in your body.