8 Questions You're Embarrassed To Ask About Sex

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1. Does hormonal birth control affect my sex drive?

Numerous studies have looked at this problem, but with conflicting results. Some have observed a correlation between birth control and low libido among women, while others have found no significant link. Other studies report a higher sex drive among women on the Pill, and some show no change at all.

Most hormonal birth control methods work by releasing hormones that stop ovulation. So if you’re using the Pill, the ring, the patch, the shot, or the implant — you’re not actually ovulating each month. Alternatively, your ovaries are also responsible for producing testosterone, which is thought to be involved in your sex drive. Some of that testosterone binds to a protein known as serum hormone binding globulin (SHBG).

If testosterone is bound to SHBG, it is inactive. It is only free (unbound) testosterone that increases libido. Since birth control pills can increase the amount of SHBG, more testosterone will bind to it, which means less is left in the active form.

2. Sometimes after sex, I experience bleeding. Is this normal?

It's well understood that bleeding might occur after the first time you have sex, because it's likely your hymen will tear in the process. However, vaginal bleeding can happen anytime to pretty much anyone after sex.

Like any other wound, a lot of blood is never a good sign. Most postcoital bleeding will be pretty light. It's pretty rare to have really heavy bleeding unless there's a laceration in the vagina.

3. Will my vagina look different after I have a baby, and will it mean less-satisfying sex?

This is a question that a lot of women have during pregnancy. In most cases, childbirth will not “ruin” vaginas. It’s true that the pelvic-floor muscles may be strained during a vaginal delivery, but the vagina is an elastic organ that can stretch and then return its normal size. Kegel exercises can help facilitate this process.

4. Can you break a penis?

Although rare, penis fracture can occur when there is trauma to an erect penis.

During an erection, the penis is engorged with blood. If an engorged penis is bent suddenly or forcefully, the trauma can rupture the lining of one of the two cylinders in the penis (corpus cavernosum) responsible for erections — resulting in a penis fracture. A penis fracture requires urgent medical attention. The injury can usually be diagnosed with a physical exam, and prompt surgical repair is typically recommended.

5. Can being in a hot tub get you pregnant?

If ejaculation takes place in hot water (like a hot tub or Jacuzzi) or water filled with pool chemicals or bubble-bath solutions, sperm could not be able to survive for more than a few seconds. In warm water with no chemicals (like a bathtub), sperm could only last for a few minutes.

It is also unlikely that the microscopic sperm could swim through the water of a Jacuzzi to get to your vagina.

6. Can you get pregnant from oral sex?

Your mouth is not connected to your reproductive organs. And since your mouth isn’t connected to your ovaries, uterus, or vagina, there’s no way to get pregnant from swallowing semen.

That being said, you can still get a sexually transmitted disease (STD) from unprotected oral sex. So using a condom is still a good idea.

7. How often do most people have sex?

The answer can range from once a week to once a month. A couple’s sex life is affected by so many different factors: age, lifestyle, each partner’s health and natural libido and, of course, the quality of their overall relationship.

So there may be no one right answer to this question.

8. Do aphrodisiacs really work? If so, which ones have the best track record?

Some foods possess chemical properties that could increase testosterone or estrogen levels, thereby increasing sex drive. Others are considered “sexy” purely because of their appearance. The Food and Drug Administration maintains that aphrodisiacs are myths with no basis in science.

Some of the better known “aphrodisiacs” include:

Oysters

Oysters improve dopamine levels which boosts libido in men and women. Oysters are also high in zinc which is vital for testosterone production and healthy sperm.

Chocolate

The Journal of Sexual Medicine published a study that found, women who enjoyed a piece of chocolate every day had a more active sex life than those who didn’t.

Pumpkin Seeds

Like oysters, pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, which is essential for healthy sperm production and preventing testosterone deficiency in men. They are also loaded with libido vitamins and minerals like vitamin B, E, C, D, K, and minerals including calcium, potassium, niacin, and phosphorous

If you have questions regarding you sexual health, be sure to contact a medical professional.

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