The female orgasmic disorder or FOD is a sexual disorder wherein a woman finds it either hard or impossible to attain sexual orgasm despite sufficient stimulation and sexual arousal. This is either psychological or a combination of psychological and physiological reasons.
In order to understand this disorder, it is critical to understand how the female body is designed to respond to sexual stimulation and what happens during an orgasm.
Female Orgasmic Disorder
Under normal circumstances, when a woman is aroused sexually, there is a gush of blood from the surrounding areas of the vagina to the blood vessels that make up the genitals. There is also a corresponding flow of fluid from the blood vessels into the vagina.
This fluid acts as a lubricant that makes the act of intercourse easy and pleasurable. The entire process of the swelling of the blood vessels and the corresponding lubrication of the vaginal canal is known as the “lubrication-swelling response.” Following this, the body tenses up and the blood continues to flow and collect in the pelvic region.
During this time, a woman continues to receive pleasure either through direct contact and pressure on the clitoris or pressure on the cervical and vaginal walls. As the tension continues to build, there is more blood flow to this area. When tension is released, the vagina and uterus contract rhythmically. This release of tension and the subsequent rhythmic contractions make up an orgasm.
The duration of each orgasm and the number of orgasms a woman can attain during intercourse vary from one woman to another. In female orgasmic disorder (FOD), a woman enjoys sexual stimulation and the vagina gets lubricated. The blood flows into the pelvic region and tension builds up, but it stops there. The tension is not released and orgasm is not attained, leading to severe frustration.
Reasons For Female Orgasmic Disorder
The reasons for female orgasmic disorder can be classified as psychological and physiological, generalized or situational. Psychological reasons include the fear of getting pregnant or hurt.
A woman who has been subjected and traumatized sexually (rape, incest or any other sexually traumatic experience) is like to develop female orgasmic disorder. A low self-esteem, unhappiness in a relationship and living in a relation that instills fear are other reasons.
Physiological reasons for female orgasmic disorder include damage to the spinal cord, side effects of certain medications and even the removal of the clitoris which is a common practice in some communities.
A woman is said to suffer from female orgasmic disorder if she suffers from psychological, physiological or both psychological and physiological problems, but never from physiological problems alone.
Other factors that are to be considered are if the inability to reach orgasm is situational (with a certain partner or certain situations) or generalized (with anyone and in any situation).
A detailed history – both medical and psychological is required. A sex therapist will want to know how long the problem has persisted and if it is situational or general, before coming to a conclusion as to whether the problem is indeed one of FOD.
Depending on the cause of FOD, the patient will require, sex education, couples therapy, psychotherapy or a combination of all three. Women are also encouraged to focus on relaxing, explore their bodies sexually, talk sex with their partner and stimulate themselves sexually.
Women are even encouraged to use sex toys and pleasure themselves. Exercises such as Kegel exercises that are known to strengthen the pelvic floor and tone the muscles of the genial may be recommended.