Onward and upward when it comes to wellness! When we consider our sexual health, we must consider the quality of three internal processes: vaginal and urethra wellness (for people with vaginas), colon wellness, and digestive wellness. Today, I am going to explore one of those three areas: colon wellness and anal play.
A few years ago, I went to a seminar presented by a urologist, a sex therapist, and a pelvic floor specialist. I will be putting something together in the near future – I promise! The urologist suggested something so easy that it was astounding to me that I hadn’t thought about it prior. When it comes to overall sexual desire, the body needs to be functioning in an optimal way – specifically, if there are issues with our bowels, our pelvic floor, and our gut, we are less likely to be interested in sex. It is no brainer, right? If you struggle with urinary incontinence, you are less likely to want to have sex. If you are constipated, you are less likely to be interested in sex. If you are feeling bloated, you are less likely to desire sex. So, let’s focus on the colon for the rest of this blog and let me be a little candid…if that is okay.
I am wondering how many people truly pay attention and proactively attend to their booty health? Yes, squats and dead lifts are great to maximize that rump but what about the everyday kind of care?
For example, would you consider switching out regular toilet paper for a bidet? Research suggests most TP is like using sandpaper to wipe your anus. Consider investing in a bidet or remember to wet some TP before wiping. The point is, people tend to over wipe and as a result, may cause abrasions to the anus. Remember when Rosie Perez told her manager in Untamed Hearts that he was like “wet sand in her underwear”. Same concept! Or not, but who doesn’t love Rosie Perez!?
When considering the amount of pressure and force used to expel a bowel movement, it is not about pushing too hard – remember to breathe (use your diaphragm) through your poo. It only causes havoc and before you know it, fissures are created which can be so painful. Patience is key. According to Bristol Stool Chart, the baby boomers know how to poop (reporting normal poo at least once a day) compared to Gen Xers and Millennials. Consider a squatty pot or another way to bend your knees in a squatting position. There is a toilet positions article right here.
Gut health is critical to colon health and colon health is critical to a quality of life! Consider cutting down alcohol and taking an apple cider vinegar gummy once a day. Metamucil can also be helpful as it adds a healthy amount of fiber to your everyday diet. Let it be known, I am not a medical doctor or a colon expert, but I do know that having an upset stomach, being bloated, constipated, and having anal fissures can most definitely decrease desire and ultimately any action in the bedroom.
This brings me to my final point. The quality of your colon is so important. In order to keep it nice and healthy in life, you also have to consider the rectum in the bedroom!
Anal play can be safe and fun but don’t get greedy! It is not a race and there isn’t one way to “do it”. During the preparation phase, it is important to identify a lubricant that works best for you and your partner. And not just a lube but a good lube. Heed the warning: NOT ALL LUBES ARE CREATED EQUAL. Silicone is the best (according to Emily Nagoski and other lubricant experts). Silicone-based lubricants are great with condoms and last longer than water-based lubricants. Unlike water-based lubricants, silicone does not evaporate and they don’t get sticky or clumpy. Really, the type of lubricant depends on the type of play (anal massage, anal sex, rimming, etc.).
When engaging in anal play remember to start small – like a pinky or a tiny anal dilator. A good colon cleansing can be helpful. By all means, take it slow! I’ve been learning a lot about butt plugs and according to my colleagues, the more flexible they are at the beginning the more fun it will be. Colon health, rectal health, gut health are all aspects to a quality sexual experience. They aren’t the only aspects of healthy sexual wellness but they are important to consider when evaluating your current state of desire.
To learn more about how to engage in safe, healthy sexual exploration consider scheduling an appointment with Dr. Schubert at Brightside Counseling LLC.