09 November, 2007

Orgasm Headaches

Orgasm headache, medically known as orgasmic cephalalgia, is the onset of an intense, throbbing, bilateral (both sides of the head, front or back) headache prior to or just as an orgasm is occurring. Though they can be intense, they are benign and pose little threat to you other than severe discomfort and perhaps a psychological interference with sexual confidence. It is not uncommon for someone who experiences these for the first time to rush to the emergency room believing that something major is happening in their head. In most individuals, however, they occur sporadically and don’t always interfere with the sexual experience. No one knows for sure how many people are affected by this condition since the vast majority of people do not report it or seek treatment for it, especially if it occurs only infrequently. This condition is far more common in men than in women, and seems to strike most commonly in the 20-24 and 35-44 age ranges.

What causes the headaches?

No one really knows for sure. It is believed by some to be stress related – the stress may be physical (from a position you are in, for example) or it may be a psychological stress brought on by job, family situation, etc. Most headache studies have done little direct examination of this condition specifically, and in those instances where medical intervention was sought, there is typically no physical manifestation seen at the time of the exam if there was no underlying medical condition.

Some practitioners will characterize it as an exertion-related problem and will recommend that you try to slow down the rate of sexual activity as orgasm nears in an attempt to prevent the headaches from becoming as severe as they might otherwise. This may work if the attacks only occur during physical sexual activity, but many males experience these headaches during masturbation, while they are not being very physically active at all. So, clearly, this is not always an exertion issue.

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