Oral Sex On a Period: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know
Due to the cramps, headaches, hormonal swings and bleeding from the vagina for about five days each lunar cycle, some people would rather not be touched with a 10-foot pole during menstruation, much less orally. But for others, this part of the menstrual cycle brings with it an increase in libido, making it easier to get aroused and orgasm.
If you fall into the latter camp, good news: First of all, the clitoris isn't especially close to the vaginal opening, so even if you or your partner(s) aren't big on blood, there's no reason you can't receive oral sex on your period. Doing so can actually ease your menstrual symptoms as orgasms have been shown to decrease the pain of cramps. Second, and more to the point, it feels fantastic.
While everyone's menstrual cycle varies, a study from Science Direct indicates that many people experience higher arousal during their period; the increased blood flow to the genitals can also increase sensitivity, leading to more intense orgasms during sex.
So why don't more people take advantage of oral sex while on their periods? Well, as with so many aspects of menstruation, the answer has a lot to do with shame, or at least a vague sense of squickiness.
Oral sex doesn't have to be off the table when you're on your period. It doesn't even have to be messy.
"Most of my clients tend to avoid oral sex while on their period because they're concerned about taste, they're concerned about the mess," reported Indigo Stray Conger, a sex therapist at Mile High Psychotherapy in Denver. "Which is a bummer, because it cuts out a whole part of each month where you're not engaging in sex at all, either because you think it's going to be messy or embarrassing, or because of an implicit sense that we're supposed to avoid sex during that time."
If you're tired of sitting out five days of every month, take heart: Oral sex doesn't have to be off the table when you're on your period. It doesn't even have to be messy. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Pick a low-flow day for oral sex on your period
For most menstruating people, there are one or two days of your period during which you bleed much more, and much heavier, than the rest. If this is your first time foraying into sexual territory while on your period, try it out the day before or after your heaviest day, when your blood flow is typically lighter.
Take a shower before oral sex during your period
If you're worried about making a mess, try having oral sex in the shower. Much like ordering takeout on a weekday, you get to have all the fun of the main course with none of the cleanup.
Designate a period sex towel
We recommend something dark-colored to avoid stares at the laundromat. You may also want to invest in a mattress pad for those times when excitement outweighs preparation. The good news is that you can always wash your sheets, even if you forget the towel.
Experiment with sex during your period
Sensations of sex and orgasm tend to shift throughout the hormonal cycle, and many people report increased sensitivity while on their period, so it's a great time to explore new positions and methods. Conger reports that people are often more turned on while they're on their period. "Orgasms can feel different, different types of stimulation can feel different," she said. She recommended using that time of the month as a time to play around and "do a little comparing and contrasting in terms of what kind of sensation feels good."
Avoid products that promise to change your odor or taste during your period
First of all, they don't work––most will make you smell and taste of harsh chemicals, not vanilla sugar cookies. Second, they can mess up the delicate pH balance of your vaginal ecosystem, leading to bacterial infections. And last, there's likely nothing wrong with your taste and odor in the first place. Conger said that while many of her clients worry about menstruation leaving a bad taste in their partners' mouths, the most they'll likely experience is a faint metallic taste (and who knows, they might enjoy it).
Wrap it up for oral sex on your period, if you must
If you or your partner are truly squeamish about blood, you can always use a dental dam or, in a pinch, Saran wrap, which Conger reports is just as effective. "But it's actually thinner, so it's more enjoyable," she added.
Embrace the mess that may come with oral sex on your period
While we have all had it hammered into us from junior high onward that any and all evidence of menstruation must be hidden at all times, the truth is a little bit of blood never hurt anybody. So if things do get a little messy, don't worry about it: We hear club soda is great at getting out stains.