Orgasm, Psychological Issues Relating to

Orgasm has long troubled psychological researchers with its elusive, hard to measure, difficult to understand, and power-laden qualities. Although researchers often define sexual satisfaction based on orgasm, how people interpret sexual satisfaction and how they experience or enact orgasm remain infinitely complex. For example, studies have suggested that it is nearly impossible for physiological or biological researchers to definitively determine in the laboratory when someone has had an orgasm. Orgasms are a composite of physiological responses (e.g., contractions of the anal sphincter, shortness of breath, flushing of cheeks, pupil dilation) rather than a singular (and measurable) incident. As such, orgasms are experienced differently from person to person and from incident to incident. Some orgasms may feel intense and prolonged, whereas others fizzle out or feel ...

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