Delayed orgasm occurs when you are unable to achieve orgasm after receiving adequate sexual stimulation in a time frame that is comfortable for you. Some people only have delayed orgasms once in a while at different points in their lives, while others have them more frequently over time.
A delayed orgasm is not the same as no orgasm; it refers to when one occurs but takes “too long”. There is no single definition for how long is too long because there is no “normal” amount of time takes to have an orgasm.
One way to think about delayed orgasm is that it’s a problem if it bothers you (or, to some degree, your partner).
Delayed orgasm is little known or researched compared to other clinically diagnosed sexual dysfunctions. Although the word delayed orgasm does not appear in the DSM, which catalogs sexual disorders for physicians, a description of the experience is found in the DSM diagnoses for Male Orgasmic Disorder and Female Orgasmic Disorder:
“persistent or recurrent delay in, or absence of, orgasm following a normal sexual excitement phase.”
In 2004, a group of researchers and physicians presented a revised classification for sexual dysfunction in women, including Orgasmic Disorder, defined as follows:
“Despite the self-report of high sexual arousal/excitement, there is either lack of orgasm, markedly diminished intensity of orgasmic sensations or marked delay of orgasm from any kind of stimulation.”
Men and women with delayed orgasm
Despite the fact that men and women have similar delayed orgasmic experiences, they are treated differently in the medical and clinical literature. One reason is that women are more likely than men to experience delayed (or absent) orgasms due to a lack of stimulation, which is almost never attributed to men.
Another difference between men’s and women’s reports of delayed orgasms is ejaculation. In men, the terms delayed orgasm and delayed ejaculation are often interchanged, although orgasm and ejaculation are different experiences in men and the DSM distinguishes between ejaculation with orgasm and ejaculation without orgasm.
Female ejaculation is not mentioned in the context of delayed orgasm in women because it is neither widely recognized nor well researched in the medical literature.
Delayed Orgasm: By what is it caused?
Physical or psychological disorders, as well as various treatments for such conditions, can cause a delayed orgasm. Delayed orgasm can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
- Insufficient arousal can be caused by a lack of physical stimulation, a lack of emotional stimulation, or a mixture of both
- SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, are antidepressants. SSRIs were associated with a 10-fold increase in the likelihood of delayed ejaculation in a recent study of over 1,600 men
- Hypogonadism and hypothyroidism are two medical conditions that affect hormone production in the body
- Delayed orgasm has also been linked to conditions such as spinal cord damage, multiple sclerosis, and epilepsy
- Expectations from a spouse and a partner who has orgasm difficulties are two related elements that can trigger delayed orgasm
- Other psychological variables that can cause delayed orgasms include external pressures and the inability to focus on sexual thoughts or feelings
Delayed Orgasms treatment
Treatment for delayed orgasms depends on the underlying cause. If you have delayed orgasms and don’t think it’s due to isolated stress or medications with known sexual side effects, you should see a doctor to rule out physical causes first. If it turns out that the problem is caused by a medical condition or a medication you are taking, you have some alternatives, including switching medications and hormone replacement.
If the delayed orgasm is caused by psychological or relationship reasons, individual or couples therapy, perhaps with the help of a sex therapist, can be very successful. Sex therapists are trained to work with couples to find a method that meets the sexual needs of both partners. Treatment can include talking about your sexual ideals and relationship as well as suggesting specific sex-related exercises for homework.
An effective method is adding adult toys into your sexual routine. These gadgets come in different shapes and sizes and are suitable for everyone who wants to enjoy powerful orgasms. Depending on the type of stimulation, one can choose to use small clitoral bullet toys, magic wand vibrators, rabbit-type sex toys, male strokers, anal vibes, P-spot massagers, and many other kinds of sex toys that will provide additional stimulation during intercourse.
- American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual – Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR™, 2000) Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association. Accessed November 5, 2007.
- Balercia, G., Boscaro, M. Lombardo, F., et. al. “Sexual Symptoms in Endocrine Diseases: Psychosomatic Perspectives” Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics Volume 76, No. 3 (2007): 134-140.
- Basson, R., Leiblum, S., Brotto, L., et. al. “Revised Definitions of Women’s Sexual Dysfunction” Journal of Sexual Medicine Volume 1, No. 1 (2004): 40-48.
- Corona, G., Mannucci, E., Petrone, L., et al. “Psychobiological Correlates of Delayed Ejaculation in Male Patients With Sexual Dysfunctions” Journal of Andrology Volume 27, No. 3 (2006): 453–458.
- Rosen RC, Lane RM, Menza M: Effects of SSRIs on sexual function: a critical review. J Clin Psychopharmacology 1999; 19:67–85