Saturday, May 9, 2009

How big is the average penis?

How big is the average penis? Every source I look is different.

The average, flaccid penis length is 3.5 inches - and the average, erect penis is 6 inches. The average penis girth is 4.5 inches in circumference. *However,* most of this information comes from voluntary polling, which may suggest that there is some exaggeration on the part of reporters (about 50% of people with penises express desire for a larger organ!). Also, flaccid penises have a lot more variability than erect penises (apparently, some people call an erection the 'great male equalizer') - so urinals or locker rooms (or other places with public, flaccid penises) is no place for comparison!

Like the perceived number of sexually active peers, most people overestimate the average penis size (in fact, 85% of men, according to one pole, overestimate) - and this can lead to a lot of needless anxiety. Regardless, wherever someone falls along the penis size spectrum, there are so many (more important) factors to what goes on with your penis. It *is* how you use it, not how big it is!

Hope that helps (there is a lot of variation...and we can't find a median or standard deviation for these values...alas.)


Monday, April 20, 2009

Vibrator + Condom?

Is it necessary to put a condom on a vibrator if you're going to use it for penetration? Do you have any other tips for the first time using a vibrator?

Great question! The material, maintenance and use of sex toys varies so much that it's hard to say exactly if or when a condom should be used with your vibrator (which, again, is why this is such a good question).
Here is some general advice that applies widely:

*Condoms should be used if the vibrator is being used by more than one person, as in all practices of safer sex with a partner(s).

*Condoms should be used if a lubricant -other than water-based lubricant- is being used. The integrity of silicone based toys is jeopardized with the use of silicone based lubricant, and latex based toys, just like latex condoms, break down with oil based lubricants. Therefore, applying non-water based lubes after a condom is placed on your vibrator can help protect your toy; however, in these cases, water based lubricant may be a safer bet. (For more on lubes, see below!)

*Condoms are recommended with toys that contain phthalates. You may recognize the word "phthalate" from concerns regarding reusable water containers (i.e. nalgenes). Phthalates are often used in sex toys, too, especially with "jelly rubber" toys. Because the negative health effects of phthalates are open for debate, protecting yourself with condoms to create a barrier between yourself and the tissue exposed to phthalates might be a good idea.

*Finally, condoms are good to use if the toy hasn't been cleaned. It is good practice to wash your toy (again cleaning agents depend on the material, but when in doubt go mild!) with very gentle soap after each use. A lot of materials are porous and serve as an excellent home for bacteria.

As for the first time use of a vibrator, it's an great idea to take your time and explore. Set the mood: create a comfortable space for yourself that doesn't have the risk of interruption. Feel the strength of the vibrator and different levels of pressure on other parts of your body first (your inner thigh, your chest), then try bringing it down to your genital area. Babeland (a site Sexperts really likes!) has an excellent guide for vibrator use:

Good luck. Thanks for the question :)


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Are silicone based lubes dangerous to use with latex products?

Silicone and water-based lubes are really great for all latex products!

~Silicone-based lube is newer to the market. It lasts longer than water-based lube and can be used in the water without being washed away (a pro or a con). The only time when someone can run into trouble with silicone based lubes is with sex toys made out of silicone; this will cause it to break down and jeopardize the integrity of the product!
~Water-based lube is tried and tested. It very infrequently causes irritation and it is easy to clean up (without lots of soap which is required for silicone) - but it might dry up quickly (solved with easy reapplication! or with some saliva!). The water based lubes that contain glycerin (usually those snazzy flavored ones) can cause yeast infections.

-->Oil-based lubes (usually like Vaseline or lotion) *do* break down latex. They can also "coat" the inside of the vagina or anus, leading to infections. This sort of lubrication is safely used by people with male genitalia masturbating alone or for people with female genitalia who stick to external stimulation.

Can a STI be transmitted via oral sex?

Great question!
There is a risk of transmission during unprotected oral sex. The San Fransisco City Clinic has put together a really nice STI (aka STD) Risk Chart and it's online:
This site breaks down different sexual acts, along the lines of biological, sexual organs, into categories of STI known risks, possible risks, and unknown risks.
It also notes that:
  • Kissing, mutual masturbation, and frottage or dry humping are considered safer sex activities, with little to no risk of STD transmission.
  • Using latex condoms (male or female) significantly reduces the risk of contracting STDs during anal, vaginal and oral sex.
  • Washing hands and the genital area thoroughly before and after oral-anal sex reduces the risk of transmission of most of the listed STDs and conditions. Condom use reduces transmission risk even further.
Another great resource, specifically regarding HIV transmission during oral sex, can be found on the CDC webpage:
This was a really wonderful question that continues to have a rather vague answer! HIV can definitely be passed on to either the person performing or receiving oral sex; however, it is only speculated that the risk of transmission is less than through unprotected anal or vaginal intercourse.

Thanks for asking,


Thursday, February 19, 2009

Tips on making that first time most enjoyable?

What advice would you give to a man who wants to ensure that a woman's first experience with sexual intercourse is as comfortable and enjoyable as possible?

Thank you so much for your question. It is very promising that this woman will have an enjoyable first experience with sexual intercourse given your concern and consideration!
Because we don't know how much other sexual activity you have had with this person, it might be a good place to start with getting to know each other's bodies. Figuring out what feels good and what it's like to communicate sexually may work wonders for minimizing anxiety and/or pain with intercourse...and, of course, getting the most pleasure out of that experience!
Give each other lots of time to explore. Find a place that is calm and comfortable without distractions or interruptions. Go slowly- there will always be the opportunity to revisit the possibility of intercourse; instead, focus on having fun and feeling good (by touching, kissing, caressing...and communicating).
While some women do not experience pain with penetration, pain, or discomfort, can be part of a woman's first experience with intercourse. Spending lots of time on outercourse/foreplay and arousal will help a woman lubricate herself naturally- and water-based lubrication can do wonders as well! Put some lube at the tip of the inside of an unrolled condom, on the outside of the condom, and/or on the entrance of the vagina. If a woman is relaxed (including her vaginal muscles!), penetration will be much more enjoyable as well. Sometimes, experimenting with different positions can increase the pleasure and comfort for both you and your partner. has lots of (animated!) recommendations for different positions.
Other things to address beforehand that might make the situation more comfortable is the "safer" sex talk....If you two are comfortable having intercourse, it would relieve an entire layer of potential complication and tension to clear up (in advance) what contraceptive and barrier devices you both would like to use. Making sure one/both of you know how to properly put on a condom will ensure that that sort of stuff doesn't take away/distract from all the other emotions/excitement of the moment. And she may feel more confident if there is another contraceptive used in addition to a condom. There are many options and she may want to make an appointment with a women's health provider to discuss her options (hormonal methods and some non-hormonal methods require a prescription).
Finally, the first time can be awkward - or at least less-than-cinema-worthy. There may be discomfort, there may be lots of vaginal lubrication, there may be no orgasms, there may be earth-shattering climaxes...The pressure is off that first time if you both go into it knowing that there is lots of room for improvement and lots of time to take things slowly :)

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Where can you get spermicide in Hanover?

As you may already know, spermicide helps to immobilize sperm and/or block the cervix. It does have its benefits (i.e. relatively cheap, available without a prescription, can be used like a lube).

You can purchase spermicides at CVS in Hanover. They have spermicide gels and spermicide films. The gel is usually inserted into the vagina (sometimes with an applicator) or can be rubbed over the penis. It is also used with diaphragms, cervical caps or condoms. The film is folded and inserted into the vagina. After about 15 minutes, it should dissolve on the cervix.

Before you use spermicide, you should be aware of some of the downsides. Spermicide can cause an allergic reaction (usually from a main ingredient called "nonoxynol-9 (N9)") that is not only irritable to you or your partner but can also cause abrasions that *increase* the risk of STI transmission! Women also report higher rates of UTIs (urinary tract infections), and when used alone, spermicides are *not* very effective.

Condoms have proven to be much more effective overall, and while some argue that combined use of spermicides and condoms increase overall birth control efficacy (because spermicides offer no STI safety), there is some concern that spermicides actually degrade the quality of condoms. There are many people who use spermicides quite happily -and you very well may be among them- but it is best to be informed and use it with caution!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Active Sexperts and Their Bios?

Is there still a blitz bulletin of the names of active Sexperts and their bios on blitz or did it expire already?

Yes! It accidentally expired - but it should be on the blitz bulletin now. We only post bios on blitz to keep people's names and information within the Dartmouth community. Let us know if you have any difficultly accessing the Sexperts bulletin!

Thanks for noticing :)

Friday, January 9, 2009

How should I submit questions to you guys/gals?

How do I anonymously submit a question to the Sexperts Blog!?

So, we haven't quite figured out an easier way to do this yet- but here's the how-to (as of now)

Click on "comments," directly below the header of this post (or any post for that matter). Fill in the comment box and choose the option of "anonymous" (unless you'd like to choose otherwise). The text you add to the comment box will be sent to the Sexperts blitz account. It will *not* immediately be posted (but we'll get it in our blitz box!). We will approve comments we find appropriate, and post the answers promptly!!