Sex Love and Relationships Wheelchair Sex After Spinal Cord Injury Wheelchair sex and the ability to develop sexuality, participate in sexual activity, and maintain long term intimate relations is desired as much by people with a disability as in the general population.
The amount of physical sexual function and ability to feel pleasure or pain sensation after a spinal cord injury depends on level and completeness. In general, an incomplete spinal cord injury affects sexual function to a varying degree if at all, as opposed to complete where no function exists. For men with incomplete spinal cord injuries involuntary motor and or sensory function still exists below the level of injury. The ability to achieve a sustainable erection for wheelchair sex and reach orgasm is usually possible.
After a complete injury the ability to achieve erections, ejaculate, and father children can be greatly compromised. For women complete or incomplete, following an initial absence of menstrual cycle, fertility is rarely impaired, though vaginal lubrication may be. In both sexes limited to no sensation below the level of injury is common.
By having wheelchair sex many couples are re-discovering sex after spinal cord injury. Wheelchair sex enriches their lives and results in a more understanding closer relationship. Practice safe sex as you would normally. Men with a permanent Indwelling Catheter IDC can remove or fold back and cover with a condom or otherwise secure to penis shaft. Women with an IDC can also leave a catheter in during sex unless it causes problems. Stoma and those who self-cath pass a catheter several times a day to drain bladder usually do so just prior to sex to avoid any unwanted urine leakage.
Quadriplegia sex with catheters after spinal cord injury Usually high level quadriplegics cannot go without a catheter for long. If either wheelchair sex partner or soloist has major concern about a catheter for medical or aesthetic reasons tape it and any tubing to the body prior to love making.
Be aware tubing pressed hard against skin can cause blisters. A sleeve of soft material slipped over the catheter and or tubing may avoid blistering. Orgasm Erectile and Vaginal Function Men with incomplete spinal cord injuries may achieve reflex, but not psychogenic erections.
While a more than adequate blessing for most, such erections are not always sustainable or strong enough for penetrative sex. Not only can unpredictable erections cause embarrassing situations during sexual intimacy but for wheelchair users in public being void of sensation below the level of injury unaware they have an erection. It has been reported that 45 percent of men have experienced orgasm after spinal cord injury.
Complete injuries involving S2 to S4 affect the nerves responsible for two main chambers corpora cavernosa of the penis which fill with blood to create an erection, damage at and above this level makes reflex physically stimulated erections totally unachievable for most. If a sphincterectomy has been performed reflex and psychogenic erections are rarely possible. Difficulties with erections may eventually be experienced by nearly half of men with Multiple Sclerosis MS caused by lesions of the thoracic spine and autonomic nerves.
The most sensitive area of the penis is the fraenum underside of penis head. A vibrator applied to the fraenum can not only induce erection but orgasm, ejaculation. For a woman laying face up the erogenous zone is two to three inches inside the vagina and upward, called the G-spot. Women with incomplete spinal injuries are generally able to produce vaginal lubrication and enjoy wheelchair sex.
For women with complete injuries between T10 and T12 there is typically an absence of either psychogenic or reflex lubrication. Attempted penetration of the vagina by any means may trigger adductor and pelvic floor muscle spasm. Be patient and never force entry. It has been reported that 53 percent of women have experienced orgasm after spinal cord injury. I have tried Viagra several times. In the interests of research for this wheelchair sex article of course.
Devices such as vacuum erection pumps can initiate erection and tight rings or bands applied to the base of penis will restrict blood drain from the penis once erection is achieved. Penile pump implants are also available but carry risk of erosion, leakage, or infection requiring removal.
Disability sex wedge, paraplegic sex swing, hoist bondage and armrests for wheelchair sex Disability sex aids like sex wedges, sex swings, vibrators, the height of a bed or table, power tilt on a wheelchair and easily removable arm rests are worth consideration when purchasing equipment with wheelchair sex in mind.
Partners of wheelchair users will attest the wheelchair itself becomes a sexual aid at times. For the more sexually adventurous, electric powered mechanical sex seats and fetish equipment like neck braces, casts, catheters, crutches, straitjackets, bondage, electrostimulators, mouth spreaders, and speculum devices exist. Sex lubricants such as K-Y Jelly can assist in achieving sexual penetration and increase enjoyment of wheelchair sex.
Wheelchair Sex Positions Wheelchair sex positions How do people in wheelchairs have sex? Just like any other person, usually in bed. Some sexual positions are more difficult in bed after spinal cord injury as paralysis makes it hard to roll over or climb on top, compounded by loss of leg function for support, and hips for thrust.
Most modern wheelchairs have easy to remove armrests, swing away footplates, folding backrests and locking brakes and such easily accommodate wheelchair sex and greater sexual freedom.
Those in wheelchairs due to spinal cord injury often describe their wheelchair as their legs and therefore it becomes a part of their sexuality. Paraplegics rely on upper body strength to perform adventurous wheelchair sex positions. Quadriplegics or Tetraplegics rely on assistance from their partner to do the same. For wheelchair sex sliding the paralyzed male or females bottom to the front edge of the wheelchair seat gives greater access for sex.
When both sex partners have high level spinal cord injuries a sex worker may be employed to assist in wheelchair sex and intercourse. Be aware when limited sensation below the level of spinal cord injury exists, sensitivity above the level of injury often increases, and can become hypersensitive. Go easy on those nipples. Some find paralysis and wheelchair users very sexually attractive and actively seek them as partners.
Most are caring empathetic people genuinely interested in people with disabilities. Occasionally however such relationships are sought assuming that a position of dominance and control will be given and can result in conflict or violence.
Wheelchair sex fetish should not be thought of as perverse. Like any sexual practice it only becomes unhealthy or inappropriate and often illegal when forced into or thrust upon minors and unsuspecting, unwilling parties. For example; public masturbation, flashing and up-skirting. Throw Clinical Approach Out The Bedroom Window As a C4 incomplete quadriplegic male able to achieve reflex but not psychogenic erections the sight of my beautiful girlfriend still makes me want to pin her to the wall and tear her lingerie off with my teeth.
A clinical diagnosis deeming psychogenic, sexual thought and erotic vision of no benefit to establishing erection, bares no relevance in the bedroom. Scented candles, rose petals, lingerie, nudity, enticement, foreplay, wheelchairs and other apparatus can hold new use and appreciation for both sexes.
Blessed with a patient willing partner I even turn my head sideways looking at my hoist lately. It took time to recognize that what I was feeling during sex was less about physical sensation and more of a mental build-up. It was completely frustrating at first, but I think part of the healing process was learning the ways my body works differently after my accident. Talk with them to learn about their body, likes and dislikes. People with a physical disability often have a poor self body image, thinking they are damaged goods, broken, somehow less than.
Often an able-bodied sex partner will feel guilt for having full sensation. Healthy love making is about pleasing your partner. The person with limited sensation from spinal cord injury often derives great joy and sexual satisfaction from simply pleasuring their partner. Emission being a trickling or leakage of semen with no rhythmic contractions of the pelvic floor muscles as in true ejaculation.
Some with complete cord lesions at lumbar or sacral level may be able to achieve psychogenic erections and emission. Retrograde ejaculation, where the semen is ejected into the bladder rather than the urethral meatus is common. When ejaculation cannot be achieved by sexual intercourse it may be induced by masturbation or vibrator stimulus of the fraenum underside tip of the penis.
Emissions may also be induced by rectal electroejaculation a vibrator applied to prostate via the anus. When neither ejaculation nor emission can be achieved collection of sperm by epididymal aspiration or testicular biopsy a sample collected from testicles by needle is possible. A low sperm count with diminished motility swim strength is often due to continuing non-ejaculation, infection and raised testicular temperatures from sitting in a wheelchair and laying in bed for long periods with little mobility and poor air flow.
Earliest collection and storage of sperm after a spinal cord injury might therefore be enacted. All good reasons to engage in regular wheelchair sex. It is essential to obtain microbiological cultures of the seminal fluid and eradicate any infection prior to proceeding with an attempt at fertilization. For women after an initial absence of menstrual cycles fertility is rarely compromised. If the spinal cord lesion is complete above T10 labor may be painless.
When unable to bear down effectively during the second stage of labor forceps are often used to assist in delivery. Autonomic Dysreflexia during labor is a risk for mothers with a spinal cord injury at T6 and above, this can be prevented with an epidural anesthesia. Please consider making a contribution to the production of this video at Sex Smart Films.
For significantly disabled wheelchair users such as high level spinal cord injury tetraplegics quadriplegics on ventilators living in structured environments, nursing homes, group homes and institutions, wheelchair sex and opportunities for sexual and gender expression may be limited.
Institutional barriers to wheelchair sex and sexual relationships include cramped conditions, a lack of privacy, unwelcome intrusion by support staff, prohibited relationships with staff, prohibited sexual contact between residents and prohibited sexual relations between residents and visitors.
For wheelchair users with spinal cord injury this positive sexual representation not only promotes wheelchair sex. It strengthens sexual self-identification and heightens sexual self-esteem. It creates an avenue for non-disabled people to see the disabled in a more sexually attractive light. Disability in the Commercial Sex Industry Paraplegics and quadriplegics are employed as sex workers in several fields. Increasing numbers of women with paralysis from spinal cord injury and other physical disabilities are being employed in the phone sex industry.
Some customers specifically request sexual surrogates qualified sex therapy educators who engage in sex. Some earn a living as wheelchair sex porn stars. Disability sex educators, with an actual disability, are highly sought after.
Wheelchair bound glamour models are increasingly seen in the fashion industry. The wheelchair becomes nothing more than a prop. The relationship between disability and the commercial sex industry has developed healthier approaches through increased education and recognition of sexuality of people with disabilities as an important issue.
With or without disability however gender imbalance will always exist, where women are seen as goods and men as the consumer or buyer of such goods.
Disability in the International Sex Industry The global sex industry is worth an estimated billion US dollars per year spawning many illegal underground sub-cultures.