The Female Sexual Response Cycle

Whenever I give a sexual health presentation for a group of women, I will ask the crowd if any of them are familiar with the female sexual response cycle. The reason that I ask this is because I feel very strongly that women understand this concept in order for them to know what to expect in their intimate lives.

Rarely has anyone ever been familiar with the female sexual response when I pose the question. The answers I receive are everything from “no” to “I think I have heard of that and the best answer ever being “you are not talking about a sex toy, right?”  Right, not talking about a sex toy but understanding the female sexual response cycle will help a woman if she plays with sex toys; self stimulates or engages in intimate relations with another person.   

I have taken it upon myself to educate women about the female sexual response cycle so they understand what is happening to their bodies when engaging in intimate relations with themselves or others. Understanding how a woman’s body works is helpful in knowing when things go wrong and also how to treat sexual health dysfunctions like low sexual desire, arousal issues and anorgasmia (inability to experience orgasm). 

To that end, the traditional female sexual response cycle is a linear model that was based upon the work performed by the infamous sex researchers Dr. William Masters and Virginia Johnson (Masters and Johnson) in the 1950’s.  Prior to their research which involved couples having sex in their lab, female sexuality and orgasm was poorly understood. Their research is the foundation for much of what we know about sexuality and sexual function today.

 In their groundbreaking research, Masters and Johnson detailed different stages of physiological changes that occur in women during sexual stimulation:

  •  desire or interest in sex;
  •  arousal or excitement;
  •  plateau (a steady state of pleasure prior to release or orgasm);
  •  orgasm; and
  •  resolution. 

Knowing and understanding the female sexual response cycle can make sex more pleasurable and enjoyable. So now you know about the female sexual response cycle.

For more information on sexual desire, please visit: www.enertopia.com/sexual-health