The Sexual Response Cycle
September 18th, 2011
The sexual response cycle is important to understand, as both male and female should learn more about the opposite sex’s cycle. Men and women are very different in several ways; however, their sexual response cycles are very similar. There are four phases to the sexual response cycle, beginning with the excitement phase, then the plateau phase, on to the orgasm phase, and finally ending in the resolution phase. One may experience a sexual dysfunction in his or her life, but no fear there are several common methods of treatment to help resolve the issue. One may find it interesting after reading and understanding the sexual ...view middle of the document...
Men show some increase in the circumference of the head of the penis, which also takes on a purplish color. The testes are elevated into position for ejaculation and may reach one and a half times their un-aroused size. In women, Vasocongestion swells the outer part of the vagina, contracting the vaginal opening in preparation for grasping the penis. The inner part of the vagina expands further. The clitoris withdraws beneath the clitoral hood and shortens. Breathing then becomes rapid, like panting. Heart rate may increase to 100 to 160 beats per minute, and blood pressure continues to rise.
The third phase in the sexual response cycle is the orgasmic phase. The orgasmic phase is characterized by pelvic contractions and accompanied by intense pleasure. The orgasmic phase in the male consists of 2 stages of muscular contractions. In the first stage, semen collects at the base of the penis. The internal sphincter of the urinary bladder protects urine from mixing with the semen. In the second stage, muscle contractions propel the ejaculate out of the body. Sensations of pleasure tend to be related to the strength of the contractions and the amount of seminal fluid present. The first 3 to 4 contractions are generally most intense and occur at 0.8-second intervals, this is about 5 contractions every 4 seconds. Another 2 to 4 contractions occur at a somewhat slower pace. Rates and patterns can vary from one man to the next. Orgasm in the female is manifested by 3 to 15 contractions of the pelvic muscles that surround the vaginal barrel. The contractions first occur at 0.8- second intervals. As in the male, they produce release of sexual tension, weaker and slower contractions follow. Erection, vaginal lubrication, and orgasm are all reflexes, that is, they occur automatically in response to adequate sexual stimulation. Blood pressure and heart rate now reach a peak. The heart may be beating up to 180 beats per minute and respiration may increase to 40 breaths per minute.
The final phase of sexual response cycle is the resolution phase. The resolution phase is when the body gradually returns to its pre-aroused state. After ejaculation, blood is released from engorged areas, so that the erection disappears. The testes return to their normal size. In women, orgasm also triggers the release of blood from engorged areas. The nipples return to their normal size. The clitoris and...