Feels good, does good.
Getting down and dirty while you're on your period isn't for everyone. Socially, it's still seen as unacceptable to some. Ask mother nature though and she has a different idea.
There's a reason why women feel horny on their period (a study found that the changing level of oestrogen during menstruation can seriously boost our libido). And if you follow your natural instincts, science says you'll find a whole host of benefits which mean you can ditch the hot water bottle and paracetamol.
It's not strictly sex that does the trick, even masturbation can help, the main thing is that you reach orgasm.
How can an orgasm help period pain?
When we orgasm, we release a burst of chemicals such as dopamine, a chemical messenger involved in pain processing in our brain. The release of dopamine acts as a natural painkiller by increasing our pain tolerance. “Serotonin and dopamine are mood-enhancing hormones, which are released while having an orgasm. These are effective in curing menstrual cramps," Dr Aruna Kalra, Ob-gyn at CK Birla Hospital told Health Shots. Therefore we can ditch the paracetamol and stick to being doped up on our own natural drugs.
Orgasms also increase blood flow. "When you orgasm, the blood rushes to the uterus and helps relieve the cramps. It also helps us get rid of stress and even releases endorphins in the body, thereby enhancing relaxation and helps you sleep better," Dr Kalra adds.
How can an orgasm make our period end quicker?
Orgasms release the chemical oxytocin, a hormone that controls our uterus. Oxytocin helps our uterus to contract during an orgasm and when our uterus contracts, it pushes out blood. "Although no studies have been done on this, it’s likely that menstrual blood in the uterus is squeezed out during orgasm," Dee Fenner, M.D., director of gynecology at the University of Michigan told Metro, meaning we can expel all the blood quicker.
How can our periods give us better orgasms?
The good news is, the benefits work both ways. While an orgasm can make our periods less painful, our periods can make our orgasms even better. “During menstruation, there is increased blood flow and circulation which can increase arousal, sensitivity and pleasure," sex educator Che Che Luna told Healthline. “And blood makes great lube,” she adds.
How to make it less messy?
The most common reason for skipping period sex or masturbation is the mess. That's where menstrual discs or cups can make a huge difference. According to Healthline, they sit higher up in our vaginas (by our cervix), which blocks the blood from making its way down to where you would insert toys, fingers or your plus one. “Some people even report that having sex with a menstrual cup in is extra enjoyable because of the ways it puts pressure on their G-spot," explains Luna. Just beware that menstrual cups and discs aren't forms of contraception and you're still fertile, even when you're on your period.
Written by Elle Turner.
This article originally appeared on GLAMOUR UK.