10 interesting facts about buttholes: getting to know [and love] your anus
YOUR BUTT, like any other part of the body, can be a place for curiosity, attention, exploration and pleasure.
When we begin to deconstruct heteronormative, patriarchal, capitalist notions and beliefs around bodies and sex, its worthwhile to get curious about and investigate how what we have been taught to feel around different parts of the body affects our own capacity to give love to and experience pleasure in and around each one of these places .
Butt stuff has historically been treated as a taboo subject, however, at least since the time of the ancient Greeks humans have been putting things into and playing with anuses to experience pleasure.
Whether or not we want to explore sensual, erotic touch or penetration in our buttholes, we still benefit from knowing more about this part of our bodies.
So, after years of research and practice and based on the information provided by doctors, sex educators and sexologists (listed below in resources), here are
10 interesting Facts about Buttholes
1. EVERY BODY has an anus <3
This means that folks anywhere on the gender and sexuality spectrum, regardless of their reproductive anatomy, can enjoy anal play. Of course, just because you can doesn't mean you have to! it's absolutely up to you to decide what you want to do with your body.
2. The anus is one of the most densely nerved areas of the body
The skin surrounding the outer rim of the anus is one of the most sensitive parts of the body. Clinical Sexologist Dr. Lindsey Doe explains that sensations in this area are very intense and are shared with the genitals by a nerve called the Pudendal Nerve.
Therefore, anuses can easily be stimulated by the tongue, a finger or a butt plug, and inserting a penis/dildo all the way up the bum is most definitely not the only way to experience anal pleasure.
3. The anus is an access point to the prostate
According to Paul Joannides, sex educator and author of The Guide to Getting it On, one of the most common and most pleasurable forms of anal stimulation is anal massage. For people with a prostate, gentle massaging of the interior walls of the rectum allows one to reach the pleasure point of the prostate, which can result in bringing a person to orgasm.
4. The rectum includes a pair of sphincter muscles that guard the gates of your anus
"Although these muscular rings were designed to facilitate outgoing rather than incoming objects, they can be taught to yield in either direction."
- Paul Joannides
The external sphincter is under conscious control (you can, and you are welcome to try as your read, relax or tighten this muscle at any moment). However, the second set must be taught how to relax when you want in order to have comfortable anal sex.
5. You can teach your rectum to relax
For folks new to anal play, sex ed experts recommend starting with a gentle massage just using fingers and /or tongue around the anus. Taking penetration off the table until the bottom (or receptive partner) is relaxed and aroused enough to feel ready for something going into their ass.
Jack Morin, author of Anal Pleasure and Health, suggests the following technique for teaching your rectum to relax: once the person bottoming is comfortable and turned on, the topping partner lubes up a clean finger and gently inserts it in the other partner’s rear (you can also do this on your own). Repeat each night for a week, or as often as feels comfortable for you. By pushing very softly and slowly this exercise builds trust and relaxation.
6. The anal opening is not self-lubricating
That is part of the reason why you should be very cautious with your butthole.
Joannides tells us that
"no matter what you are putting inside a rectum, it needs to go in very slowly and come out very slowly".
Otherwise, extreme discomfort and even physical damage might result.
Also, because the rectum was designed to absorb fluids back into the body, make sure anything about to be introduced is both clean and well-lubricated.
7. Things can get stuck inside the rectum
That’s why we have to make sure that anything going up them is firmly anchored on the outside of the body so it can’t get sucked up inside.
As for sex toys or any other objects lost up your bum, do not try to remove it yourself. The instinct may seem correct, but you risk moving it deeper. If you can't squat or push it out, seek medical attention. Depending on the object, this can be a very serious situation.
8. Drugs are def not your butts bffs when trying anal play
Drugs inhibit our ability to feel pain. When under the effect of substances you may not get those pain signals and end up getting hurt. Your rear end is more easily damaged by sloppy sex than other body part.
Keep in mind that anal intercourse is the highest risk behavior for HIV transmission as well as other infections due to the fragile, absorbent tissue.
9. There is no poop in your rectum because your rectum is merely a passageway (most of the time)
The rectum “is merely the toll booth between the colon and the toilet” (P. Joannides). To prevent any poop appearance, you are encouraged to make sure you've had a bowel movement and shower before your anal adventure.
If you have chronic pooping problems, anal sex might not the best kind of sex for you (or if you are temporarily not pooping normally then it is best to avoid until you are feeling healthy).
10. People of all genders can orgasm from anal sex
Not everyone likes or enjoys anal sex. However, as Dr. Doe emphasizes; anal sex can be the only orgasmic outlet for some people, and for others it may even be the best orgasmic outlet. Because of this, anal play is a very common sexual practice.
When it comes down to it, there’s all sorts of good reasons to get on friendlier terms with your booty… from getting to know your body better to exploring your taboo desires and even your kinky side.
curious and want to learn more? here are 6 resources on anal play:
Podcast: The Dildorks
TikTok: Doctor Carlton
Guide to Getting it On by Paul Joannides
Girl Sex 101 by Allison Moon
Ultimate Guide to Prostate Pleasure by Charlie Glickman
 for more on this read "Countersexual Manifesto" by Paul B. Preciado
DISCLAIMER: Anal sex is not recommended when your rectum is not in good health. It is not advisable to continue any activity if it is painful. If you are not sure if it is safe and right for you, it's better to check with a physician or qualified expert first.