The thing we all think about when we should be doing other things; that sensation we hope to experience consistently, wish we had more of, work toward, and worship. A feeling of intense pleasure during sexual activity, also referred to as climax, climaxing, or coming. The sometimes elusive, ever delightful peak of sexual arousal. But what IS an orgasm? What is actually happening to your body when that fantastic wave crashes over you?
The Sexual Response Cycle defines the physical and emotional changes during sexual activity in four distinct phases. Of the four phases, which are Desire, Arousal, Orgasm, and Resolution... Orgasm is actually the shortest phase! It usually only lasts a few seconds for most people.
When you orgasm, you may feel some or all of these reactions:
- Your muscles contracting involuntarily
- You may feel spasms in your feet
- Your breathing is likely to be very fast, as well as your heart rate
- The muscles of your genitals create rhythmic contractions - in bodies with penises (and sometimes vaginas), this creates ejaculation
- Your body might get red all over, sometimes called the “sex flush”
- A sudden, forceful release of sexual tension
You’re probably not paying attention to any of these things specifically when you’re coming, because the overall feeling of orgasm can also create a kind of hyper-focus, with an end result often being described as a “shattering” feeling in both body and mind. You might feel tingly or emotional as well. All perfectly normal!
There are a multitude of ways to have an orgasm depending on the body you reside in. All types of orgasms are valid and equal. One is not better or worse than another. You can read about How To Have An Orgasm or about any of the specific types of orgasms in our Orgasms 101 blog.