Your Guide to Understanding Anorgasmia

When you first hear the word ‘anorgasmia’ it sounds a little alien-like, right? If you were to take a good guess, you probably still wouldn’t have gotten it right.

That’s because anorgasmia isn’t really talked about. Yet, it exists for many women. But what is it and how can you overcome it? In this article, that’s what you’re going to find out.

What is Anorgasmia?

Before we dive deep into anorgasmia, it’s important to know what it is exactly. Anorgasmia is a medical term for regular difficulty reaching orgasm after receiving ample sexual stimulation, causing significant stress on the individual. In other words, it’s when a person struggles with having orgasms.

In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 5th Edition (DSM-5), female anorgasmia is called “female orgasmic disorder” and male anorgasmia is called “delayed ejaculation.” Now, while male anorgasmia exists, female anorgasmia is more prevalent.

Symptoms of Anorgasmia

The primary anorgasmia symptom is the inability to have an orgasm. However, there are secondary anorgasmia categories.

  • Lifelong anorgasmia - when the individual has never had an orgasm.

  • Acquired anorgasmia - when the individual used to have orgasms, but now struggles to reach climax.

  • Situational anorgasmia - when the individual is only able to orgasm in certain situations, for example, during oral sex.

  • Generalized anorgasmia - when the individual isn’t able to have an orgasm in any situation, regardless of the partner or types of sexual activities.

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What are the causes of Anorgasmia?

There are various reasons why someone may struggle to achieve orgasm. While it varies, some of the causes are:

Physical causes

Many illnesses can interfere with an individual’s ability to achieve orgasm. They can include:

  • Diseases - serious diseases such as Parkinson’s disease causes issues with achieving orgasm.

  • Medications - many prescription and over-the-counter medications have side effects that negatively impact an individual’s orgasm (ex. Erectile dysfunction can stem from medications). They include antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, antipsychotic drugs, etc.

  • Alcohol and smoking - alcohol can affect an individual’s ability to orgasm, while smoking reduces blood flow to the area.

Psychological causes

Psychological causes can also play a role and may include:

  • Stress
  • Embarrassment
  • Feelings of guilty around sex
  • Mental health issues such as depression or anxiety
  • Religious or cultural beliefs
  • Previous emotional or sexual abuse

Relationship issues

If you’re in a relationship with a lot of problems, it can affect your sexual relationship. These issues may include:

  • Infidelity
  • Unresolved issues
  • Lack of connection
  • Poor communication about sexual needs and desires
  • Partner violence

How do you know if you have Anorgasmia?

Do you think you or your partner has anorgasmia? If so, consider these questions:

  1. Have you ever had an orgasm before? What’s your experience with achieving orgasm? Have you had one before? If so, what were the circumstances? Have you spoken to a sex therapist before?

  2. What’s your sexual experience? Have you spent time exploring the different types of stimulation? Some people require more oral sex while others need clitoral stimulation. Try out different ways to be stimulated and see what happens.

  3. Have you consulted a doctor for medical advice? Have you received any health information (blood tests, etc.) that can indicate you have anorgasmia? It could be health-related and it’s important to narrow down what is causing this.

How to overcome Anorgasmia

If you feel you may have anorgasmia, we highly recommend you consult your physician or a sex therapist. However, if you’re struggling to achieve orgasm, here are some helpful steps you can take.

  1. Speak with your doctor. Rule out any health or medical-related issues. Perhaps it’s coming from the medication you’re taking. Once you rule out those options, you can focus on your psychological relationship with sex/partner.

  2. What’s your relationship like with sex? How do you view sex? Are you someone who had positive encounters with sex? Have you had any traumatic sexual experiences? Was sex or sexual activities taboo in your upbringing?

  3. What’s your relationship like with your body? How you see your body can impact your sex life. People who are more self-conscious about their bodies struggle with achieving orgasm.

  4. What’s your relationship like with your partner? If you’re not comfortable with your partner or have ongoing issues with them, it can impact your sex life. Think about your relationship with them - is something causing you to be distracted?

  5. Talk about it with your partner. Your partner is there for a reason, and you should feel comfortable sharing this information with them and talking about the issue. Maybe they can suggest something that will help.

  6. Use toys. Try using sex toys either with your partner or on your own. We recommend spending some time on solo play to learn more about your body and what brings you pleasure.

  7. Relax. You want to experience an orgasm and you will. But putting pressure on yourself will not make it happen any faster. Take a deep breath and chill out. You will orgasm, but it will take some time.

Anorgasmia is a real condition and isn’t easy to overcome. But it’s impossible. As long as you're dedicated to exploring the different areas of your life and seeing what’s really causing this, you’ll be one step closer to overcoming it.


Natasha Ivanovic

Natasha Ivanovic is an intimacy, dating, and relationship writer best known for her writings on Kiiroo, LovePanky, Post Pravda, and more. She's the creator and author of her short stories on TheLonelySerb. She completed her first degree in Criminology and continued and finished her Masters in Investigative Psychology, but then decided to follow her true passion of writing.

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