Sexual Response Cycle

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The Sexual Response Cycle Amanda Turner PSY/210 February 14, 2010 Kathy Smith The Sexual Response Cycle The sexual response cycle refers to the sequence of physical and emotional changes that occur as a person becomes sexually aroused and participates in sexually stimulating activities, including intercourse and masturbation. The sexual response cycle for man and women have some similarities and some differences. Knowing how one’s body responds during each phase of the cycle can enhance a relationship and help one pinpoint the cause of sexual dysfunction (Cleveland Clinic, 1995). The sexual response cycle is divided into four phases: excitement, plateau, orgasm, and resolution. Both men and women experience the four phases of the sexual response cycle, although the timing is usually different. Since it is unlikely that both partners will reach orgasm at the same time the time spent in each phase varies from person to person. The sexual response cycle is characterized by vasocongestion and myotonia. Vascongestion is the swelling of the genital tissues with blood. It causes erection of the penis and swelling of the area surrounding the vaginal opening. The testes, the nipples, and even the earlobes swell as blood vessels dilate these areas. Myotonia is muscle tension. It causes facial grimaces, spasms in the hands and feet, and then the spasms of orgasm. Here we look at how each phase of the sexual response cycle works. The first phase of the sexual response cycle is the Excitement phase. This phase includes thoughts, fantasies, and motivation to engage in sexual activity (Benuto, 2009). Vasocongestion during the excitement phase can cause erection in young men as soon as 3 to 8 seconds. The testicles swell, his scrotum tightens and the male begins secreting a lubricating liquid. In the female, excitement is characterized by vaginal lubrication,

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