Why are women horny during their period?

in #steemstem5 years ago
Back in the day, I wrote a post about taboos so all of you who are gasping just at looking at the title should consider reading that text first. You can find it here: A TABOO topic, shhh... Anyway, do not worry about why this one does not have an NSFW tag, it doesn't need one. These days, people know more about celebrities, politics and what is happening on Mars than they do about their own bodies. This post is here to fix that and provide valuable information about this topic from a biological and psychological standpoint. Trust me, you will learn a thing or two so stick around until the end. I promise you will not regret it.


CCO image, Unsplash, author: Michael McAuliffe, adapted by @zen-art

To some women, talking about sex and libido during period is horrifying and seems either like a really bad joke or a provocation. How could we have sex if the inside of our pants looks like a crime scene, cramps are so intense it feels like a sumo wrestler is sitting on our bodies and our emotions are skyrocketing out of control? Want to set the world on fire and watch it burn down while you eat chocolate? Yup, I've been there but here's a little secret, an orgasm will fix all of that. ALL of that.

Before we get to why a lot of women (NOT ALL) are horny during their period, we first need to have a little review of the entire hormonal cycle to see what a "normal time" to be horny is and why. Women have a 28-day cycle, that is what most of us have learned in school, right? Wrong. According to MSD Manuals and the majority of gynecologists, only 10 to 15% of ladies have 28-day cycles because they usually range from 25 to 36 days. Women are not robots and their bodies (along with their hormone levels) are different. Do not expect all women to act, think, speak, ovulate, menstruate or have sex in the same way.


Ovarian and Uterine cycle by @zen-art, with the use of CCO image by LJNovaScotia from Pixabay

Cycle can be seen from the perspective of the ovaries and the uterus and they are both are in 3 stages, pre-ovulation, ovulation, and post-ovulation. The cycle starts with the first day of the period. From the standpoint of the uterus, we have 2 phases in the first stage: menstruation (bleeding starts to bleeding ends) and the proliferative phase (bleeding ends to ovulation starts). From the standpoint of ovaries, the first stage is called Follicular (bleeding starts to ovulation begins) and it is the time the pituitary gland produces follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) which tells the ovaries to prepare an egg for ovulation. When it comes to hormones, this first stage of the cycle is accompanied by low levels of estrogen at the beginning and reaching their peak before ovulation while progesterone levels remain stagnant and begin to rise just before ovulation.

Low estrogen at the beginning of the period causes fatigue and as it rises so does the energy levels of the woman too.

The second stage of the cycle is ovulation. It is the time when high estrogen levels signal the brain to increase in luteinizing hormone (LH) and the egg gets released from the ovary into the fallopian tube. The estrogen levels continue to increase and the progesterone levels start to increase during ovulation while they decrease after it.

Ovulation is the best time to get pregnant but since the sperm lives 3 to 5 days, a woman can get pregnant even if she had sex up to 5 days before ovulation. Keep in mind that woman can also get pregnant during her period but we will get to that later.

The last stage in the cycle is called luteal and it is the time when the sack which once contained the egg now produces estrogen and progesterone. It starts with the end of ovulation and ends with the beginning of the next period. This is when that good old PMS happens. The follicle that contained the egg transforms into corpus luteum and the rise and drop of hormones causes mood changes, acne, bloating and many other.

The cyclical rise and fall of estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and DHEA during every month of women's lives will, as an effect, have different impacts on not only mood but the sex drive too. However, even if the logic of biology will tell you how women should be most horny during ovulation (and they mostly are) the story is not that simple.

There have been many studies which confirmed how (even if we do not like to call it that) women do tend to be "in heat" like most animals during the middle of their cycle when they are ovulating. This is nothing to be ashamed of and is evolutionary-based. Since that is the best time to make babies and sex is the way to do that, it is natural that our biology made sure ladies would be more inclined to say yes during that time.

The evidence suggests how women have from slight to moderate (some have high) libido increase around ovulation. The University of Virginia, University of Rhode Island, Dutch researchers, Arizona State University, researchers from Canada, Sweden, Finland, and Spain all confirmed it. Increased sex drive during ovulation has a hormonal basis. Estrogen is very high and testosterone rises a bit which makes a fun mix. If you are not trying to get pregnant, remember to check your calendar if you start feeling extra sexy and make sure you use protection. Ovulation is the time when some of us would hump a tree if we could but it is also the time when getting pregnant is pretty easy if you are healthy so do not let your hormones clear your good judgment and stay protected.

After reading all of the above, one would think that women who are horny during their periods are crazy or how there is something wrong with them. Well, I refuse to think that anything is wrong with me and I admit to craziness only during PMS time. Truth be told, I get ridiculously horny during my period and I have yet to chose between 3 possible reasons why. Since period is the time when my fertility and sex hormone levels are at their lowest, I should not be feeling this way and my libido should be sound asleep, right? Wrong.

1, 2 or 3? You pick!

When it comes to science, we can not pinpoint the exact reason why this happens to many women but there 3 possible explanations which I will name psychological, physical, and hormonal or PPH for short. If I can have PMS than I can have my PPH too. I deserve it, lol. First, we have the psychological side where we are taught that there is no possibility of pregnancy during period (which is false) so we get more uninhibited. Also, consider that orgasms are natural ways of dealing with stress and pain since there are all kinds of happy molecules produced during that time. Next time your body starts aching with cramps, try orgasm instead of a pain pill and see if it helps. Spoiler alert: it will.

The physical explanation is quite nice too. During the period, the uterus is expanding with blood and pressing upon nerve endings in the pelvic basin. When those nerve endings around the vulva get stimulated, the brain can interpret that as something actually touching us. Pretty cool, thanks brain! The last explanation deals with hormones. Progesterone is not a sexy-feeling hormone so there is a possibility to feel turned on in its absence and it is at its lowest during period. There is also a slight testosterone rise during period which kicks thing up a notch too. Yes, women have testosterone hormone too, didn't you know? We have it at much lower levels than men, of course, but it is there and its slight rise during menstruation can be one of the causes for a libido rise.

Before I get into another taboo thing lets get one thing clear first: you are normal either way. If you are feeling unattractive and have a low libido during your period, you are normal and it is fine, it will pass. If you are feeling horny during your period, you are normal too. Do not expect your body to be anything other than it is and in that way that it is, love it and be happy with it. When all else fails, masturbation will do wonders for you so do not feel pressured to have sex just because you feel horny. It can be tricky and hard to understand how you can feel both attracted to sex and repulsed by it at the same time. It happens and again, masturbation will do wonders.


CCO image, Unsplash, author: Josefin, adapted

If you choose to help yourself during your period, there is either an option of having sex with another human or masturbating. In both cases, it can be a mess but it will bring a smile to your face and a huge pain relief. Wanting an orgasm during menstruation may seem odd from a reproductive standpoint but you will not go wrong if you listen to your body and give it what it craves never the less. Sex is more than just making babies and has great physical and psychological benefits. Even oral sex is possible if you use tampons and do not forget that your nipples are sensitive and will cause an oxytocin rise as I have written about in my last post. Talk to your partner and ask for help but be understandable if you hear a "no" answer and help yourself instead. Have fun and love your body, learn about it and play with it. From my personal experience, a good orgasm is always better than a pill but you need to try it for yourself and see if it works for you too. Good luck!

If you are interested in learning more about this topic, CHECK OUT THESE REFERENCES:

How the Menstrual Cycle Affects Women's Libido from psychologytoday.com

The menstrual cycle: more than just your period from helloclue.com

Menstrual Cycle by By Jennifer Knudtson, MD, and Jessica E. McLaughlin, MD, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

Why You’re So Ridiculously Horny On Your Period from womenshealthmag.com

Until next time,
KEEP YOUR SMILE ON!

Image sources AND LICENCES in order of appearance:

- all images used in this post are free for commercial use, they are royalty free with the links to original images provided under them
- titles are made with the CC0 image from Pixabay that can be found here
- line divider that I use is from FREE CLIPART LIBRARY, and is here
- my bitmoji avatar was created on https://www.bitmoji.com/, visit the site to create yourown

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I don't know why they are horny, the only thing I know is that it is my fault.

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Yes, if we are on our periods, everything is your fault. ☺️

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Really interesting article @zen-art!

I don't know why being "in heat" is still a taboo, since most of the women experience it during some phase of their menstrual cycle.

I can even tell when I'm ovulating by how horny I am at certain point. So in my case, I'm craving for sex only during ovulation, but as soon as my period starts, I'm completely losing interest, which means that I don't even want to be touched and/or approached.

It's kinda weird and exhausting dealing with such ups and downs in mood and libido, but I'm used to it by now.

I'm not sure if you were talking about having sex while having terrible, red thing coming out of you, for me that's absolutely disgusting and out of the question.

Ups and downs and then ups and downs again, there is a great youtube video that made me laugh:

And yes, I was talking about sex during red terrible thing coming out of you lol. Most women find it disgusting even if they are horny and that is why masturbation comes to the rescue. As for the taboo, I think it is still present because people do not talk about it enough. It is getting smaller and smaller so that is a good thing. Just a couple of years ago, you could not find so much neither online or in printed form about these kinds of topics.

In my experience, if you're in a relationship all it takes is to be open with your partner about your mood and libido swings, so that he can know what is going on. That extends to all other people close to you whom you have to interact with.

Sometimes, during my PMS, terrible mood changes occur, and that can happen during couple of hours. I can go from being completely fine to absolutely irritable, or I can suddenly become extremely whiny and needy. It can be really difficult not just for me, but for my significant other, if he doesn't have a clue what is going on.

So communication is the key in overcoming these tricky situations.

Awesome article @zen-art! :D As a psychologist I don't really 'know' many taboos or at least always try to learn to talk about them. It took me the first 25 years of my life to casually mention 'Oh I'm menstruating so I feel [...]' instead of making excuses 'I'm sorry I can't come to work I have a flu'. It's a shame that something so normal is so hard to talk about. Articles like this really help. I'm wishing women that they explore and find ways to have healthy cycles and adapt their routines to what phase they're in - that video you're sharing in the comment section is awesome for that - also a way to very light-heartedly explain bits of how cycles change our moods and fitness with others.

Thanks! :-)

I stop believing in taboos decades ago and am always happy to see others who share my views how education and communication build a lot of bridges between people. As for that video, I don't remember how I came across it but it was my inspiration for this text. The ending is hilarious and so true :D

Hahaha - it really is! Every month I'm like 'there we go again...' xD Very convenient our bodies have a built-in painkiller mechanism ;-)

One word response, LOL: always

GREAT post. And lovely to see you back in this neck of the steem woods btw. x


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I am glad you approve darling, thanks for stopping by 💚

I find myself giggling at this like some shy school kid while at the same time being totally impressed that you’ve tackled this “taboo topic” on the blockchain. 😄

Period horniness.... never.
The few days right before... hold my beer! 🍺.
🤣😂

But then middle age comes along and a lifetime of predictability gets crapped right out the door! Every month now I wonder what is evening happening here?!!! 🤣😂🤣

Every month now I wonder what is evening happening here?!!! 🤣😂🤣

I am laughing so hard at that line. Thank you thank you thank you 💚

Yup, I totally agree with your take.

And it blows my mind that these are still taboo subjects for most people. That's completely insane.

But it eminds me of a stand up comic's special I saw, I think it was Chris Rock? But not entirely certain.

Paraphrased, he said, "So you've figured out how to make your man cum?

"Congratulations. You now know how to make every man on the planet cum.

"But every woman is different.

'Once you figure out how to bring your lady to orgasm, cool. That's a wonderful thing.

'But if you split up, that won't work for your next lady. You'll have to figure it all out, all over again.

"Every. Woman. Is. Different."

Truth.

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Hahahaha, I saw that joke, it is from this comic Gabriel Iglesias also know as Fluffy. He has pretty good stuff and yup that one really was hilarious 🤣

THANK YOU!!!

I was trying to recall who said it, and even though Chris Rock came to mind, I still had a sneaking suspicion that it was someone else.

I appreciate your correction/confirmation. I really like to credit the proper source.

We're blessed to have some really fine comics out there, who give us such great insights into the absurdities of life and the human condition.

I've never seen either of these artists live, except on TV, but I love them both.

Along with a whole host of others. ;-)

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I am so sharing this with my wife! Thanks

I hope she likes it ;)

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Interesting post, thank you!

Thank you for reading it. I am glad that you have enjoyed it.




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