Sexual Wellness Resource Center
For Adults over 50.

More about Outercourse, Explore Each Other’s Erogenouse Zones

By Michael Bates, M.D.

In our article on outercourse, we discussed different ways to enjoy outercourse.

  • Kissing
  • Erotic talk
  • Masturbation
  • Mutual masturbation
  • Body-to-body rubbing
  • Role playing
  • Sex toys
  • Bathing together

To carry outercourse pleasure a step further, our erogenous zones provide great intimate enjoyment. An erogenous zone (from Greek eros for love and English –genous for producing) is an area of the human body that has heightened sensitivity, the stimulation of which may generate a sexual response. These erogenous zones are located not only on the genitals but also all over the body.

Let’s begin with the most talked about erogenous zone, the G-spot. Does it really exist?

Many years ago a serious, young farming couple came into my office. They wanted help to find the “water button,” (the G-spot?). It warmed my heart that this young couple had the courage to talk about their sexuality to me. It was obvious that they were very much in love, that they communicated well, and that their sexuality was important to them. I remember thinking after they had left, these young people have the basis for a successful marriage.

The realization of the importance of the anterior vaginal in sexual pleasure and orgasm is attributed to the German gynecologist Ernst Grafenberg who proposed the existence of such an area in a 1950 paper. The term G-spot was later coined to recognize Dr. Grafenberg’s research and broke into public awareness in 1982 with the publication of the book “The G Spot and Other Recent Discoveries About Human Sexuality.”   Dr. Grafenberg’s original description refers to a small but allegedly highly sensitive area on the anterior wall of the vagina about a third of the way up from the vaginal opening.

 The scientific challenge is to confirm the existence of the G-spot in studies with reproducible results.   Although many take for granted that the G-spot is real, objective investigative measures have still failed to provide irrefutable evidence. The basis of Dr. Grafenberg’s claim was not based on evidence, but on reported anecdotes about his patients. In 1982 Goldberg et al. examined 11 women using a standardized manual technique and they were able to determine the G-spot in four of them. The subjects in this study knew that researchers were searching for a sexually sensitive area, as did the individuals who performed the stimulation. It is likely that this played a major role in the responsiveness of the subjects.

From these meager beginnings has developed a multimillion dollar business producing books, videos and products all designed to promote the G-spot. The lower third of the anterior vaginal wall does appear to be the most sensitive region of the vagina, yet the existence of an anatomical “spot” on the wall remains to be demonstrated.

What is clear is that there are many genital focuses of erotic arousal in women,

  • the vulva responds to light, brushing touch
  • the clitoris is extremely sensitive and responds to gentle pressure and vibration
  • the anterior vaginal wall (the G-spot?), firm stimulation leads to more intense orgasms
  • the perianal skin responds like the vulva, to light, brushing touch

These zones in women are part of a larger body of specific erogenous zones that includes the lips, breasts and nipples.

  • Not only the lips but also the tongue are sensitive and can be stimulated by kissing and licking.
  • The entire breast is covered with a network of nerve endings and responds well to manual stimulation. Nipple stimulation activates the same region of the brain as sensations from the clitoris and vagina, women can reach orgasm with nipple stimulation alone. Manual and/or oral stimulation is pleasurable.

In men the specific erogenous zones are

  • the foreskin (although circumcision doesn’t appear to decrease sensation and sexual pleasure) responds to touch, kissing and licking
  • the corona or head of the penis is extremely sensitive, light-touch, kissing, licking and sucking are all effective methods of stimulation
  • the shaft of the penis responds to stroking
  • the scrotum is likewise sensitive to light touch, kissing, and licking
  • the perineum (the skin between the scrotum and the anus as well as the anus itself), pressure and massage of this area externally stimulates the prostate gland and anus
  • the prostate gland is very sensitive, gentle internal massaging the gland with the finger through the anus is pleasurable and increases the intensity of orgasm.
  • the lips, as in women, the lips and tongue are sensitive, kissing and licking provides pleasurable sensations
  • the nipples are sensitive for men, too. Licking, gently increasing pressure, gently biting, gentle twisting and pulling all provide pleasurable feelings.

So what are the nonspecific erogenous zones? In these zones, the skin is similar to normal-haired skin. That is, thicker skin with fewer nerve endings, but still sexually responsive. These areas include the following in both sexes

  • the fingers and soles of the feet
  • the scalp
  • the ears
  • the neck
  • the abdomen and navel
  • the inner thighs
  • the buttocks.

Wherever the erogenous zone, all respond to variations of touch, moisture, warmth, pressure, and vibration as an act of intimacy.

What is the take home message? Erogenous zones are located all over the body, not only on the genitals. Since everybody is a little different, explore them, experiment, and communicate to find out what you and your partner like. Begin to enjoy outercourse. Exploring and identifying these different erogenous zones improves sexual health.

 

References

Corbett, Holly, 8 new ways to touch your guy during sex, www.shape.com

Dwyer, Peter L., Skene’s gland revisited: function, dysfunction and the G spot, Int Urogyecol J (2012) 23:135-137

Goldberg DC, Whipple B, Fishkin RE, Waxman H, Fink PJ, Weisberg M. The Grafenberg spot and female ejaculation: a review of initial hypotheses. J Sex Marital Ther 1983

Hines, Terence M., The G-spot: A modern gynecologic myth, Department of Psychology, Pace University 2001

Kilchevsky, Amichai, MD, Vardi, Yoram, MD, Lowenstein, Lior, MD, Gruenwald, Llan, MD, Is the female G-spot truly a distinct anatomic entity? J Sex Med 2012

Erogenous Zone, www.en.wikipedia.org

Everything you want to know about male and female erogenous zones, www.greatist.com

  

About the Author

Michael Bates, M.D.

Dr Bates practiced obstetrics and gynecology for 34 years in Wichita, Kansas, until his retirement in 2011.

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