Some people denounce it as an abomination, some hold it up as the greatest thing ever. The point of this web page is not to judge either way. Both men and women participate in anal sex. Many people participate in anal sex without knowing the risks they take, the specific acts to avoid or the potential for long term health effects.
There are ways to avoid most of these risks however, so it is important to educate yourselves. The system of tissue, muscle, bone and tendon that allow the intestinal system to finish its job are quite complex.
The anorectal canal is supported within the body by both muscles and tendons. Blood filled cushions line the bottom end of this canal, allowing the body to move, stretch and bend without damage to the canal itself. These cushions also help with anal sphincter control and signal the body when a bowel movement is necessary. Anal sphincter muscles are not very strong. They are also easily damaged.
The hemorrhoidal blood cushions help protect these muscles and those of the pelvic floor from tearing. These cushions are filled with balloon-like veins. When necessary, the veins swell to make the cushions bigger and capable of absorbing more shock. After the need has passed, the veins usually go back down to normal.
Chronic abdominal strain and chronic anal irritation are the two root causes behind most hemorrhoids, and anal sex gives an ample amount of both. First, whenever the body senses something within the anorectal canal, it tries to push that object out. Second, the normal function of the anal sphincter is to allow a bowel movement, not to be rubbed against for a long period of time.
If you rub your hand rapidly back and forth across a rough surface, the tissue will swell due to irritation. Anal sex irritates the anal sphincter and anorectal canal in the exact same way. Anal sex hemorrhoids and anorectal damage usually happen due to badly performed anal sex.
There are a couple of reasons for this, one of which is that the vagina produces its own lubrication. Another reason is that the tissues of the vagina are a lot tougher than the tissues of the anorectal canal, and the vaginal canal itself is bigger.
The female organs evolved to allow sexual intercourse, childbirth and all of the physical strains that come with both. The anorectal canal did not. However, there is a lot one can do to make it safer and reduce the risk of resulting hemorrhoids. Anal Sex and Infection The first is, of course, use a condom.
There are a plethora of bacteria in the intestinal tract that live there permanently. They were never meant to live anywhere else. However, everyone carries bacteria that cause disease, the anorectal canal is full of such disease causing bacteria, give them access to another part of your, or your partners body, and you are ripe for infection to set in. The first rule is use plenty of water based lubrication. Therefore, you must replace it entirely. Use enough to be messy about it. This helps to avoid the sheer irritation that generally cause hemorrhoids to start.
It also helps avoid muscular damage to the anal sphincter. In addition, avoid lubricants with spermicide when participating in anal sex. The entire point of a spermicide is birth control, and birth is not a risk in this particular act. It is not the sexual act that one can get fast and heavy with. Anal sex requires conscious control on the part of the receptive partner. Gaining such a level of control over bodily functions takes time and work.
Pain is a useful tool, especially here. Both parties have to leave their pride, fear and hang ups at the door. This takes a lot of trust and a willingness to look at sex as a journey two people go on together, not a performance trial or a measure of self-worth.
Tensing up will create the abdominal pressure that causes hemorrhoids and muscle damage. In addition, do not participate in anal sex if one of you is ill. This includes a cold, the flu or any kind of illness. Do not participate in anal sex with anyone whom you know has a sexually transmitted disease. Do not participate in anal sex if hygiene is an issue. And finally, as stated before, do not participate in anal sex if you want to be completely sexually safe.
Anal sex carries far more health risks than vaginal sex. Because of the high blood supply and high white blood count of the anal region, HIV infection is far more likely in anal sex than vaginal sex. Because of the unique structure and purpose of the anorectal canal, hemorrhoids and other physical health problems are far more likely than with vaginal sex.
Complete safety in vaginal sex requires a monogamous relationship between two people who have been verified disease free. Many a poor soul has found themselves with a life threatening infection given by a supposedly monogamous partner. However, vaginal sex is far more safe than anal sex. Nor is there any scientific evidence that anal sex is, in and of itself, guaranteed to produce physical problems.
However, it is a risky endeavor and people should be aware of the risks before participating in an act that can ruin both life and quality of life. Find out how to keep yourself safe and decide on the risks you are willing to take. Education is the key to enjoying a long, happy life. Anal sphincter structure and function in homosexual males engaging in anal receptive intercourse.
Amer J of Gastroenterology Ice, editing by D.