Done right, anal sex can be an intimate experience that feels good for both parties. But done wrong, anal sex can be painful or even traumatizing. Follow our advice to safely try anal sex.
Relax The Right Way
Although some people recommend a glass of wine as a way to relax during anal sex, we caution against imbibing too much alcohol or doing other drugs, especially those that change the way you perceive sensation. You need to feel what your body is telling you to ensure you’re not doing any lasting damage to your rectum or colon or to avoid any tummy troubles. It may be easier to exchange massage with your partner, cuddle and get an orgasm or two under your belt to help you relax, instead.
For this reason, we don’t recommend numbing spray during anal activities. Although it might seem like a good idea, especially if you’re worried about pain, numbing creams and gels can lead to lasting damage if you don’t have pain acting as a signal to slow down or stop. If you wish to use a numbing product on the penetrating partner, use it on the inside of a condom, but remember that communication is essential to any pleasurable sexual experience.
Listen To Your Body
Pain or discomfort during anal sex typically indicates that too much is happening. It’s too fast, too dry, or too rough. To alleviate these issues, heed the following advice:
- Take it slow: Take your time with foreplay (massage, oral sex, and anal fingering are all recommended) and activities that help you relax. The more relaxed your body is, the more comfortable penetration will be. Breathing exercises can help you get in sync with your partner. When it comes time for penetration, don’t just shove it in. Ease it in slowly, pull out slightly, then push in a bit further. It will take longer to fully penetrate your partner, but it will be worth it.
- Use lube: Apply a generous amount of lube to your anus and the penetrating penis, toy (butt plugs and prostate stimulators are both fan favorites), or fingers. A thick lube adds cushion, but some people prefer one that’s slicker. Reapply lube as necessary. A pump bottle is a great tool to keep things mess-free. Avoid lube that contains spermicide, which can be incredibly damaging to the anus and even make it easier to contract an STI.
- Be gentle: After you get accustomed to the sensation of anal sex, you might be able to be more enthusiastic about it. However, start gentle and work your way up. The rectum and colon can easily be damaged, resulting in an embarrassing and costly trip to the emergency room!
Talk To Your Partner
Communication isn’t just for pleasure, it’s for safety. If your partner is penetrating you anally, you must tell him or her what feels good and what doesn’t. Pain or discomfort is your body’s way of telling you what’s up. You might need to start over, use lube, go more slowly, or try again another day. So pay attention to those cues and let your partner know. If you’re with a partner who doesn’t listen to your needs or if you suspect that might be the case, you might want to reconsider whether you can safely engage in anal sex with them.
Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff
Because relaxation is so critical to having a good time when you try anal, you don’t want to get upset over the small things. It’s sometimes better to try again a different day. It’s entirely possible that anal play might involve some fecal matter. Again, it’s normal. Don’t worry too much about it.
A troubling first time might scare you off from trying anal sex again, which is why the right mindset and preparation can create the positive environment you need for safe and enjoyable anal sex.