Let’s start with a fun fact: Only 25% of women achieve orgasm with penetration alone. Okay, that might not be the type of fun fact you were expecting, and it especially isn’t fun for the 75% of women not getting an orgasm. However, it’s something that needs to become common knowledge.
That’s right; the media is lying to everyone when women in movies and TV shows are able to achieve orgasm with only penetration every single time. It’s possible that many women have yet to experience an orgasm, especially those in the older generation, because they have not branched out to other methods of achieving an orgasm.
Whether you’re a woman looking for how to achieve the coveted orgasm for yourself or a man looking for how to help your partner orgasm, you’re in the right place. But first, let’s talk about why a female orgasm is so much rarer than a male orgasm.
The Orgasm Gap
The orgasm gap refers to the difference in the number of men and women who orgasm in heterosexual sex (i.e., one man, one woman), and it occurs primarily because sex is set up for men to orgasm, and it usually takes a bit more work to get a woman to orgasm. A 2010 survey on women between the ages of 18 and 48 found that 80 percent of women faked vocalizations about half the time they were unable to have an orgasm. It’s time to start being honest about orgasm!
A 2018 study questioned more than 1,500 newlywed heterosexual couples about their orgasm frequency and their misperception of their partner’s orgasm frequency. The results found that 87% of husbands and 49% of wives consistently had orgasms. These numbers demonstrate the orgasm gap between men and women.
What’s more, 43% of the husbands in this study misperceived how often their wives orgasmed, meaning they thought their wife orgasmed when she really did not. Both men and women stated that sexual communication resulted in a greater relationship and sexual satisfaction, so this lack of communication needs to be addressed to increase both these areas.
This study also found that men receive greater sexual satisfaction when they believe their partner had an orgasm, perhaps resulting in women’s likelihood to fake an orgasm. However, instead of faking it, we as a society need to instead learn the different methods of achieving an orgasm and encourage experimentation to find what feels right.
Not only will this benefit women, but it will give their partners greater sexual satisfaction as well, meaning everyone is having a better time.
Types of Orgasms
There are many ways for females to achieve an orgasm. Let’s go over them.
Perhaps the most common method of trying to achieve orgasm, but also the method by which very few women can achieve orgasm. This type of orgasm involves pleasure from the vaginal walls, so extra girth is needed to achieve the orgasm you or your partner are seeking.
You can try inserting an extra finger or two into the vagina or use a sex toy with extra girth. Most people don’t achieve orgasm this way, though, so don’t be discouraged if it isn’t working for you; just try a different method to seek orgasm.
The elusive clitoris, hidden away but a source of intense pleasure when stimulated correctly. Luckily for women, both indirect and direct stimulation can lead to a clitoral orgasm.
Rubbing your fingers or palm on the clitoris in different directions and increasing pressure can help achieve a clitoral orgasm. In addition, small vibrators are a girl’s best friend when it comes to clitoral orgasms.
The final type of orgasm is a cervical orgasm. The cervix is at the lower end of the uterus, so you’re going to need something deep to achieve this orgasm. However, the reward is one of the best since this orgasm stems across the whole body and can last a while for some lucky individuals.
However, one of the best tools to keep in your arsenal is a combination orgasm, achieved by stimulating a combination of the erogenous zones above. When done correctly, you or your partner will get a powerful climax.
One of the best ways to achieve a combination orgasm is to add sex toys to regular intercourse. When the correct rhythm is found, the results can be breathtaking, literally.
Other Erogenous Zones
Let’s not forget about the other erogenous zones that can be combined with the above stimulation methods, and may also allow a woman to achieve orgasm on their own. This includes both the nipples and anus. The nipples contain lots of nerve endings that, when stimulated correctly, can lead to strong feelings of pleasure. Anal penetration can also be pleasurable if there is enough lube and time to explore and find what feels good.
Why the Number of Female Orgasms is Increasing
It may seem odd to see that statement, that the number of female orgasms is increasing, but it’s true! This fact is all because women and their partners are more willing to try alternative methods of orgasm achievement.
One way to achieve orgasm that is becoming more and more accepted is through sexual aides, sex toys. While they used to seem taboo, sex toys are now getting the attention they deserve to help bring women over the edge. With more women and partners using sex toys while engaging in sexual activities, the number of women who orgasm is going up and up. If a woman is unable to orgasm while using sexual aides, she should seek the help of a medical professional that specializes in female sexual health for an examination and to have her hormones evaluated because all those erogenous tissues are 100% hormone dependent.
Sex is becoming a topic that everyone is more comfortable discussing. So, we can now talk about things such as how only 25% of women achieve orgasm through penetration alone. Knowing this allows us to educate on other methods of orgasm, allowing females to have orgasms more often. In addition, talking about sex, in general, encourages other conversations about safe, healthy, and fun sex, making the experience more enjoyable for everyone.
The Importance of Communication
It’s essential to communicate effectively with your partner to ensure that you both are satisfied in the bedroom. Both men and women benefit from sexual communication, so be sure to listen when your partner says she did not orgasm. Instead of getting upset, see what you can do to make the next time better and if needed seek the help of a Sexual Medicine provider.
Sex toys are a great addition to any sexual relationship and may be what your partner needs to reach that climax. Remember that there are multiple methods of attaining an orgasm, so experiment and be receptive towards your partner’s reactions to each. If something is working, keep at it; otherwise, she might just go finish what you started on her own.
 Brewer, G. & Hendrie, C.A. (2011). Evidence to suggest that copulatory vocalization in women are not a reflexive consequence of orgasm. Arch Sex Behav, 50(3), 559-564. doi: 10.1007/s10508-010-9632-1
 Leonhardt, N., Willoughby, B., Busby, D., Yorgason, J., & Holmes, E. (2018). The Significance of the Female Orgasm: A Nationally Representative, Dyadic Study of Newlyweds’ Orgasm Experience. The Journal Of Sexual Medicine, 15(8), 1140-1148. doi: 10.1016/j.jsxm.2018.05.018
About Dr. Mel Irvine
Dr. Mel Irvine, DNP and Clinical Sexologist specializes in sexual medicine and beauty in Fort Myers Florida. She earned her Doctor of Nursing Practice at Florida Gulf Coast University and her master’s degree at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. In 2018, she completed a preceptorship at San Diego Sexual Medicine with Dr. Irwin Goldstein and obtained her clinical sexologist certification from STII with Dr. Carol Clark. She is passionate about working with singles and couples to learn and explore their sexuality and sexual health needs through providing a comfortable and nonjudgmental atmosphere. As a provider she offers a balanced and holistic approach that encompasses a multimodal care delivery model.