Female anorgasmia (inability to reach orgasm): causes and treatment

In the studies that have been done in the field of sexuality, much has been said about sexual dysfunctions, Its origins and its diagnosis. In this article, I would like to make a contribution on one of the most common sexual dysfunctions: female anorgasmia, Causes and possible treatments.

What is “female anorgasmia”?

By defining a little higher, we could say that female anorgasmia is the inability or difficulty experienced by the woman in reaching orgasm. Or, as Lopiccolo (1990) explains, we can also define female anorgasmia as “the persistent difficulty or inability to achieve orgasms with adequate stimulation and a normal arousal phase”.

One fact that we must keep in mind is that there are stages in which the woman experiences the absence of orgasm for small periods. These periods can occur after an important event, for example after the woman has left the stage of childbirth and physical damage has been detected; when marital relations are in crisis or when family problems arise, etc. If all of these events are not handled properly, they can lead to no orgasm and the fact not being able to fully enjoy sex.

Female anorgasmia is relatively common: type of anorgasmia

It is estimated that 7% to 30% of women suffer from this type of disorder in its three categories (although some groups of scientists distinguish up to five categories). these different types of anorgasmia son:

  • Primary anorgasmia: Refers to women who have never had an orgasm.
  • secondary anorgasmia: Occurs in women who have had orgasms and then stopped feeling them.
  • situational anorgasmia: Refers to women who can only have an orgasm under certain circumstances.

Causes of female anorgasmia

Specialists in medicine, sexual health and psychology agree that female anorgasmia has two possible origins or causes:

Organic factors of female anorgasmia

That is, those that have to do with alcohol consumption, drug abuse, organic problems (such as Rokitanksy syndrome, hormonal problems or disorders of the endocrine system. You could say that these are general health problems.

Psychological factors of female anorgasmia

These factors refer to what is related to traumatic experiences, sexual abuse (in childhood or adolescence), rigid sex education, self-esteem, etc.

The importance of culture

We know that only 6 or 7% of female anorgasmia has one. organic cause. In all other cases, the cause is psychological (93% to 94%), and thanks to a psychological consultation and an interview, its origin can be known.

We cannot forget the cultural factors and social influences influencing the onset of female anorgasmia. Not so long ago, it was believed that only women should satisfy their partner, denying that women can have any interest or sexual desire. This cultural heritage has not yet faded away, especially in the West, and this can be a source of problems. In addition, shame, ignorance of the subject and taboos made many women in the past and today continue to suffer from this problem in silence, without seeking effective professional help to deal with it.

Today in some parts of the planet a deeply sexist system is still maintained where this idea that women belong to men and must be satisfied affects the lives of many people very negatively. In some countries, Africa and the Middle East, clitoridectomy (removal or ablation of the clitoris) is performed for cultural or religious reasons, which is nothing more than an acute symptom of the cultural roots that affect many women in the world. many places in the world (also in rich countries).

Partially, these are the causes that cause many women to inhibit their ability to reach orgasm during sex, Which can result in a picture of female anorgasmia.


For a good diagnosis it is necessary go to a professional mental health specialist in these disorders. Experts say that 80% of women who go for a consultation manage to solve their problem of anorgasmia. During the consultations it is necessary to investigate the personal history of those who suffer from female anorgasmia, and of course also to investigate how they have been or what their sexual experiences have been like throughout. their life.


Cognitive behavioral therapies are proving to be effective. Few specialists recommend one pharmacological treatment, And they do this whenever there is organ damage that requires the use of a drug.

The role of the couple is also very important because the emotional support, Commitment and collaboration can increase the chances of successful treatment, play a very important role in intercourse.

Rodes, Piqué and Trilla (2007) detail a picture of the sexual skills that most professionals recommend as homework. These recommendations are:

  • Stimulate the woman to explore her body, especially her genitals.
  • While practicing masturbation exercises, try to mimic the orgasmic response through sounds and movement.
  • Receive manual stimulation of the clitoris from the couple, indicating movement and frequency.
  • Manually stimulate the clitoris during sex.

Bibliographical references:

  • Cavall, V. (2010). Behavioral Therapy and Modification (2010). Faculty of Psychological Sciences of the University of Guayaquil. Ecuador.
  • Rodez, Pique, Trilla (2007). Health book from the Clínic de Barcelona hospital and the BBV Foundation. BBV Foundation. Bilbao.
  • Sanchez Hernandez, Monk Hernandez and Gándara (2005). Human sexuality: a global approach. Pan-American Editorial. Madrid.

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