Some Doctors Are Smearing C-Section Babies With Bacteria To Boost Their Health

Some Doctors Are Smearing C-Section Babies With Bacteria To Boost Their Health

A few years ago, I came across some research reporting that the way a child is born appears to have consequences for their health. How so? Scientists believe that the bacterial composition of a woman’s vagina changes during pregnancy in order to allow certain bacteria to coat the child as it passes through the birth canal during delivery. These bacteria are thought to promote healthy development and functioning. If a child is delivered via Caesarean section (i.e., C-section), that child does not have the benefit of being exposed to those bacteria and, as a result, could potentially experience worse health outcomes than those born vaginally. However, some doctors believe there may be a way to remedy this and boost the health of C-section babies.

Read More

5 Ways Women Can Orgasm That Don’t Involve Sexual Activity

5 Ways Women Can Orgasm That Don’t Involve Sexual Activity

Women don’t need to have sex in order to reach orgasm. In fact, they don’t necessarily even need any genital stimulation at all. Here are five ways women can experience what scientists call “non-genital” orgasms.

1. Some women can literally think themselves to orgasm.

Read More

The Surprising Truth About Valentine’s Day Baby-Making

The Surprising Truth About Valentine’s Day Baby-Making

Logically, you might assume that there would be an increase in children being conceived on Valentine’s Day. Given the nature of this holiday and the emphasis on celebrating sex and romance, this would seem to make intuitive sense, right? However, it’s not supported by the data. If it were, we’d see a spike in the birth rate during the month of November, but we don’t—in fact, we actually see one of the lowest birth rates that month.

By contrast, however, there is a consistent spike in the birth rate on Valentine’s Day itself. In other words, the evidence doesn’t point to more babies being conceived on Valentine’s Day, but it does point to more babies being born on it. 

Wait—what?

Read More

Outliving Fertility: Why Menopause Might Be Evolutionarily Advantageous

Outliving Fertility: Why Menopause Might Be Evolutionarily Advantageous

On average, women in the United States hit menopause at age 51. At this point, they enter what some scientists call a “post-reproductive lifespan” (or PRLS for short), during which their bodies are no longer physically capable of sexual reproduction. Compared to other species, women are not unique in having a PRLS. In fact, so many primate and non-primate species show evidence of a PRLS that it has been classified as "a general mammalian trait" [1]. However, the thing that is unique about humans is the relative length of the female PRLS.

So why does menopause account for such a large proportion of women’s lives?

Read More

Sex Question Friday: Why Does Menopause Exist And Is It Unique To Humans?

Sex Question Friday: Why Does Menopause Exist And Is It Unique To Humans?

Every Friday on the blog, I answer people’s questions about sex, love, and relationships. This week’s question comes from a reader who wanted to know more about the topic of menopause:

“Are humans the only species in which the females experience menopause? Why does menopause exist?”

Thanks for these great questions! As it turns out, human females are not unique in having what some scientists term a “post-reproductive lifespan” (or PRLS for short). In fact, studies have found that many primate and non-primate species show evidence of a PRLS [1].

Read More

10 Surprising Facts About The Vagina

10 Surprising Facts About The Vagina

Although many women and their sexual partners have taken some time to familiarize themselves with the vagina, the reality is that most of us don’t know as much as we should about this fascinating piece of anatomy. Below, I’ve compiled a list of ten of the most interesting facts about the vagina because, well, knowledge is power…and also pleasure.

1. Contrary to popular belief, women who have frequent sex do not develop “loose” vaginas. The vagina naturally becomes looser when women are sexually aroused in order to prepare for intercourse, but after sex, everything goes back to its normal state. What does cause vaginal looseness? Childbirth (sometimes) and older age. Click here to learn more.

Read More

Sex Question Friday: Do Women Become “Loose” If They Have A Lot Of Sex?

Every Friday on the blog, I answer people’s questions about sex, love, and relationships. This week’s question comes from a reader who wanted to know whether there’s any truth to the idea that a woman’s vagina becomes “loose” if she has sex frequently.

So I was hanging out with a couple of friends yesterday and they brought up the topic of vaginas in rap music. There seems to be a lot of hype about the elasticity of vaginas or "tight pu**y" in today's rap music, so we were wondering if there is any scientific evidence about vaginas actually becoming more elastic, or "loose," because of continuous sex. Some people said yes others no, so I thought I would ask you.

Read More

Vaginal Delivery VS. C-Section: Does Different Bacterial Exposure During Childbirth Affect Kids' Health?

I heard a fascinating edition of NPR’s On Point this week about how the bacteria that colonize our bodies impact our health, influencing everything from digestion to immune functioning (you can listen to the entire show here). The thing I found most interesting about this program was when they discussed how some of the most vital bacteria for promoting healthy development and functioning are acquired during childbirth, specifically through vaginal delivery. The bacterial composition of a woman’s vagina actually changes during pregnancy, presumably to allow certain bacteria to coat the child as it passes through the birth canal. However, if a child is delivered via Caesarean section (or C-section), that child does not have the benefit of being exposed to those bacteria and, as a result, could potentially experience worse health outcomes. After hearing this program, I just had to do some digging to learn more about the research in this area.
Read More