Anal Eroticism is surrounded by a powerful taboo. Yet millions of men and women – straight, gay and bisexual – are experimenting with anal sex. The anus, richly endowed with nerve endings and interconnected with the main pelvic muscles, is the closest erogenous neighbor of the genitals and contracts rhythmically during orgasm. Thirty-five years ago, Kinsey stated that the anal region had erotic significance for about half of the population. In a survey of 100,000 Playboy readers, 47 percent of the men and 61 percent of the women admitted to having tried anal intercourse.
Yet the anal taboo inhibits most people from thinking, talking and learning about the sexual use of the anus. Listed here are the ten things most men and women still do not know about anal sex. (Previously we published the first three, here are four more facts you should know):
4. Two muscle rings called sphincters surround the anal opening. Each functions independently.
If you insert a finger about one half-inch into your anus and press your fingertip against the side, you can clearly feel the two sphincter muscles. There is less than a quarter-inch between them. The external sphincter is controlled by the central nervous system – just like the muscles of the hand, for example. You can readily tense and relax this sphincter whenever you want.
The internal sphincter is quite different. This muscle is controlled by the involuntary or autonomic part of the nervous system, which governs such functions as heartbeat and stress response.
The internal sphincter reflects and responds to fear and anxiety during anal sex. It will cause the anus to tense up automatically even if the passive partner is trying to relax. Thus, precautions about safety and comfort are essential here.
Even if a person does feel comfortable during anal sex, he or she may still need to learn voluntary control over his or her internal sphincter in order to relax it at will. Doing so requires regularly inserting a finger, perhaps in the shower each day, and feeling the internal sphincter. The muscle changes spontaneously and in response to behavior. In this instance, simply paying attention is more important than trying to relax. Anyone can gradually learn to control the internal sphincter at will.
5. Anal stimulation provides many kinds of pleasure
The highest concentration of nerve endings is around the anal opening itself. A finger can focus on them especailly effectively. When an object or penis is insertedbeyond the anal opening into the rectum, other pleasures are involved. The outer protion of the rectum, like the vagina, has several nerve endings. The inner portion responds mostly to pressure.
Some people enjoy the feelings of pressure and fullness once they understand that these sensations do not presage an impending bowel movement. Rectal pressure isespecially important to enthusiasts of “fisting,” a form of anal sex in which several fingers or een the entire hand and forearm are inserted into the rectum and sometimes into the lower colon.
In men, the protate – which is just beyond the rectal wall, a few inches in, towards the front of the body – can be a source of pleasure when massaged by a finger, anobject, or a penis. Also, the lower end of the penis, or “bulb,” is near the anal opening opening. It is stimulated indirectly by most types of anal sex.
Anal pleasure can be psychological as well as physical. The anal taboo adds to the thrill of the forbidden. The most common anti-anal message (it’s dirty!) sometimes returns as a source of raunchy, sleazy excitement. Rimming enthusiasts may enjoy the feeling that they are being disgustingly – and delightfully – perverse. Other people regard the anus as a secret, special place. Sharing it with a partner is an act of openness and giving.
6. Anal stimulation can lead to orgasm
A minority of men and women can respond orgasmically to anal sex without direct genital stimulation. Women probably do so through pelvic muscle contractions – and a small minority even though the sheer excitement of being anally penetrated. When men expereience an orgasm from anal stimulation, they tend to focus on the prostate. No doubt they are also responding to indirect stimulation of the penile bulb.
Orgasms from anal stimulation are most likely to occur when the participants become thoroughly absorbed in their sensations and fantasies. An lmost certain way to prevent such an orgasm is to be become determined to have one. Seeking an anal orgasm will create new pressures and disrupt the pleasure.
It must be remembered that most people require direct genital stimulation in order to climax. On the other hand, a few people have orgasms only with anal stimulation.
7. Diet contributes to the enjoyment of anal sex
Regular bowel movements are the major function of the anus and rectum. There must be sufficient fiber in a person’s diet to make his or her feces soft, bulky and well formed. This allows a bowel movement to be produced without force or effort. Forced evacuations irritate anal tissues, causing discomfort and adding to muscular tensions. Fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains or unprocessed bran are important sources of fiber.