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DR MIRIAM: HEALTH FOCUS: AFTERPLAY: A man's outlook.

Byline: MIRIAM STOPPARD

ONCE a man has ejaculated, his interest in sex, and possibly his partner, declines rapidly.

For a while, mainly depending on his age and health, he won't be able to achieve another erection for some time - the so-called refractory period - and therefore his interest in sex lessens.

In very young men, the refractory period may hardly exist, so great is their urge.

In his twenties, a man may boast of his three or four-times-a-night virility.

By the time he's 50, going on 60, once a night may be a rarity. Over 60, and his refractory period may be as long as a week.

For many men, the penis becomes exquisitely sensitive immediately after orgasm, necessitating instant withdrawal from the vagina.

Such men will withdraw physically from their partners, moving and turning away from them. In addition, many men may be overcome by post-coital somnolence.

During the arousal period, a large amount of blood flows into the man's pelvic area, and his muscles contract and tighten.

This blood is rapidly diverted away from the area after sex, and his muscles relax, so that excitement is replaced by drowsiness - something not experienced by the majority of women.

THINKING ABOUT YOUR PARTNER

MOST men are unaware of how a woman interprets this masculine behaviour.

After orgasm, women experience no such feelings of hypersensitivity.

Even if a man cannot combat his physiological reactions to orgasm, he can - and should - be sensitive to his partner's emotional needs.

He can give a last cuddle and goodnight kiss without too much effort before he drifts off.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jul 22, 2004
Words:262
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Afterplay.

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