Do paralyzed people get an erection?

Lifestyle - Paralyzed - and sexually active

An accident, an illness, a diagnosis of "paraplegia" - and after long months in rehab a woman or a man comes back who from now on not only sits in a wheelchair, but also has a changed body. Couples then have to get to know each other all over again. In the paralyzed area of ​​the body, the sensitivity has changed or has been lost. This can be a source of uncertainty and confusion. Pain, abnormal sensations and the loss of control over the bladder and bowel lead to a completely different perception of one's own body. Without good bladder and bowel management, a lot can go wrong in bed, for example.

But a sexually fulfilling partnership is also not closed to couples in whom one part is paraplegic - despite lack of or limited sensitivity in the genital area, lack of erection and ejaculation or dryness of the vagina.

Do paraplegics have a “real” orgasm?

Paraplegics often report orgasms "in the head", which they experience as pleasurable. The physical reactions during this orgasm, such as the increase in respiratory and pulse rates, increase in blood pressure and erection of the nipples, correspond clearly to the reactions of the non-paralyzed. Many feel relaxed, with some even the spasticity subsides.

Are there any aids?

Especially for men there are various aids such as penile prostheses or drugs that enable an erection - but that does not change the fact that the man may not gain pleasure as a result. An erection aid only brings a "benefit" to a completely paraplegic if his sexual partner attaches importance to penetration. In paraplegic women, a vagina that remains dry can be particularly problematic. In these cases, vaginal balls or lubricants will help.

Sexual organ skin

Sexuality does not take place exclusively in the sexual organs. The largest sexual organ is the skin and here in particular there are plenty of still feeling, sensitive areas. On the contrary: the unaffected areas are often doubly sensitive.

People with spinal cord injury have to get to know their "new" body first. No case is the same as the other, but after a while many of them also become normal. You start to accept your body again. Anyone who then manages to throw previous convictions overboard in the area of ​​sexuality and deal with the change has a good chance of leading a fulfilling sex life even with paraplegia.

«Puls» wanted to know how people with paraplegia deal with the issue of partnership and sexuality. Joiz presenter Gülsha Adilji and 19-year-old Simon Hitzinger met for a hand massage in the Schminkbar Zurich.

Simon Hitzinger has been paraplegic for two years after falling backwards from a terrace twelve meters high onto a slab floor on a night of partying.

SRF 3 radio host Tom Gisler and 26-year-old Chantra Flückiger discussed what paraplegia means from a female perspective for partnership and sexuality in the hamam Münstergasse in Zurich. Three years ago Chantra Flückiger jumped head first into a pool with knee-deep water.

brah / Heidelberg University Hospital / MyHandicap

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