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What Is a Spontaneous Orgasm?

By Valerie Goldberg
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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A spontaneous orgasm is when a person climaxes without participating in sexual activity. It is possible for a man to have a spontaneous orgasm, but it is much more common in women. Some women may experience the condition while participating in common activities such as riding a bike or a horse, exercising or simply wearing tight clothing, because all of these actions can cause friction against the clitoris and vulva. Other people have a medical condition that causes episodes even when nothing is stimulating their genitalia.

Chronic spontaneous orgasms can be painful, frustrating and even embarrassing. If a woman is having an episode daily or multiple times a day, she may be suffering from persistent genital arousal disorder. Women who have this condition will experience arousal sensations in their genitals to the point that the area is throbbing. Sufferers with a severe form of the condition may masturbate or have sex to relieve the sensation, only to have it return within the hour.

Women who suffer from chronic, spontaneous orgasms may have problems working and socializing because of the urgent and distracting sensations. There is no one known cause of persistent genital arousal disorder. As of 2011, the medical community is still working on learning more about this disorder. Possible causes include hormonal imbalances and nervous system issues.

Relief from the condition can be found temporarily through masturbation, but that is not enough for patients with a persistent problem. Some women try to tame the sensation by holding ice packs or heat packs to their genital areas. Others try professional pelvic floor therapy massage sessions or doing yoga and stretches on a regular basis to lessen symptoms. There is not one solid cure, so women may have to try a variety of things before finding relief.

A woman who believes she has a problem that is being ignored by her regular gynecologist or general practitioner should seek help from a doctor specializing in sexual disorders or the pelvic floor. A prescription for lidocaine gel or a low-grade antidepressant may help with symptoms. Joining a support group also can be beneficial for suffers of this disorder, which can make people feel isolated.

The condition typically pops up out of nowhere in women ages 40 to 50, but there are recorded cases of both younger and older women also suffering from spontaneous orgasms. If a woman has a spontaneous orgasm once in a great while, she likely is not suffering from persistent genital arousal disorder and should not be concerned. Women should seek medical help when the orgasms begin to cause discomfort or prevent them from participating in normal daily activities.

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Discussion Comments

By anon1003087 — On Apr 28, 2020

I am a trans woman and experience quite intense orgasmic pleasure from imagining my tucked penis is a clitoris and messaging it with my inner leg muscles. It feels really good and I can enjoy this just about any time. It's as close to the real thing as I will ever get, but I now believe I know a secret that women have known forever.

By anon1002414 — On Nov 16, 2019

I had a spontaneous orgasm several times a month from the age of about 14 until menopause at about 55. A hysterectomy at 29 didn't stop them as I still had my ovaries. I'm now coming up to 76. Since menopause I tend to have a spontaneous orgasm once or twice a year, but if I'm warm and comfortable in bed it's more frequent. I'm glad I don't get them when I'm driving any more!

By anon1000309 — On Aug 17, 2018

Three months ago I had a mommy makeover, then a few weeks later while doing nothing in particular, my body slowly rocked into a full blown orgasm. I wasn’t thinking about anything sexy, just BAM! Since then I wake up every morning and have 2-3 uninitiated orgasms that I hide from my husband as stretching and yawning. A plus is our sex life has gotten much better, but I haven’t told him about the spontaneous orgasms.

I asked my doctor for the surgical report to see if he could have done something, and even asked him point blank if he had done anything to cause this change to happen in me. He was pretty wide-eyed and said he didn’t and also when asked, said he had never been asked that by any other patient. I did say it’s not a bad thing.

Wondering if anyone else has had this experience, which I will again say, is a good thing. I can also think myself to orgasm. It’s fascinating!

By anon996505 — On Sep 08, 2016

I may be the only guy posting here but let's go. I have days that it happens around 30 times, no erection, no stimuli. I think have something wrong?

By anon994952 — On Mar 20, 2016

I am 33 years old and I just started experiencing this while healing from a hysterectomy . It happens when I sleep causing me to wake up in pain. It has happened up to four times in a row. The funny thing is they took my cervix in the surgery so I did not think an internal orgasm was possible. It would be nice to know if this is just a side affect from the surgery.

By anon991536 — On Jun 28, 2015

This happens to me in bed and generally wakes me up. The orgasm is internal and happens every 10 seconds. I can't stop or control them. To be honest, one is OK, but hundreds are exhausting. Funny thing is, I do not climax during sex and never have. In the past, I have used a vibrator to stimulate orgasm.

These are not fun, nor do they make me happy. They keep me awake and make me tired.

By anon991522 — On Jun 27, 2015

This is very interesting. I would love to know more.

By anon991322 — On Jun 11, 2015

I am 18 years old and I suffer from Spontaneous Orgasm. Some may say it's lucky, but at my age I wish it would just go away. I've suffered from it for two years, but when I was younger I thought it was just a "feeling of having to go to the bathroom". Now that I'm older, It happens about 10-15 times a week. It might not happen every day or one day for many times. These normally last 3-5 minutes. Sometimes It happens in public while I'm walking to work, in the car with my parents. Sometimes I breathe really heavy or even hum to myself.

What makes it worse, I am not even sexually active. I am a "Gold Star Lesbian", and my last relationship was almost six months ago, so yes I am a virgin.

By anon979014 — On Nov 23, 2014

I have schizoaffective disorder. When I initially became actively psychotic, at age 34, I first started to have frequent multiple orgasms (up to 30 per day). Needless to say, it was difficult to leave the house. As my disorder progressed, so did my paranoia, and I became more and more manic -- staying up all night dancing to loud music with the deluded idea that it would keep the State Department from controlling my body and causing me to have these orgasms (a theory I developed over a few weeks after they started).

I was checked out by a neurologist who told me that spontaneous orgasms happen occasionally in very old women (that is, women over 90), for no apparent reasons. However, because my spontaneous orgasms were accompanied by delusions, and no neurological defect, they were presumed to be an extension of the mania that comes with schizoaffective disorder.

If I were you, and I were otherwise normal but began to have spontaneous orgasms, I'd get checked out by a neurologist, and possibly a psychiatrist to make sure you're completely OK. Doing so myself led me to take medication that ultimately saved my life.

By anon971454 — On Sep 26, 2014

I, for one, am green with envy. You get a happy, in public, around people, and get embarrassed even though they don't know that you are getting a happy. Unless you are in pain, I just don't see the problem here.

By anon943080 — On Mar 31, 2014

I have suffered from spontaneous orgasms related to nerves for 30 years. I am a male and get orgasms and ejaculation from nerves in exams, surfing big waves, and public speaking. I have had to not do these things as it's too embarrassing. The problem is, fear of it happening makes it happen, so it becomes really difficult to do things like presentations in front of crowds etc, because the fear of embarrassing oneself in front of them brings it on -- a self reinforcing effect. It hasn't gone away for 30 years and I don't believe it ever will.

By anon929597 — On Feb 01, 2014

In my reading I'm seeing the word "suffer" a lot. I don't suffer from spontaneous orgasms, but I do experience them and enjoy them. Only once did it happen in public: I was waitressing at age 18 and experiencing a lot of stress when the wonderful feelings exploded in my genitals. Luckily I was in the kitchen and not in the dining area when it happened! Since then, 30-plus years have passed and I've had spontaneous orgasms on occasion throughout the years, mostly if I haven't had a sexually stimulated orgasm for a few months and mostly at night while sleeping. It always wakes me up and I will often use my hands to improve the sensations, which are deep vaginal palpitations. Lovely.

I've talked to friends about his and they're amazed and jealous. I consider myself lucky.

By anon356345 — On Nov 24, 2013

I am 25 years old and experienced one about three years ago while taking a university exam. I was very nervous and anxious about the exam. Before I started writing, I had mild orgasm that lasted about 10 seconds. I managed to compose myself so no one noticed.

It was a really strange experience, but I am fascinated to find out exactly what triggers it off and why.

By Annn25 — On May 19, 2013

I'm 25 years old and I had my first spontaneous orgasm two days ago. I suffer from depression and anxiety. I am taking Prozac. I had an argument with my boyfriend that night and I went home crying. After I parked my car and all of a sudden, with no physical stimulation, I had an orgasm like I have never felt before. I felt it directly on my clitoris and started moaning inside my car, having no control over it.

I read on a blog where a girl said that these spontaneous orgasms occur when she is thinking about a boy she likes or when she is mad at her boyfriend. I don't know why this happened. Maybe it was my body defending itself from sadness and this was just my body trying to relax me, just like when someone sweats when nervous or the body is too hot in order to cool down.

I really hope this doesn't happen again when I am in public.

By anon329803 — On Apr 11, 2013

I am a woman with two children and I am 32. I have been suffering from severe spontaneous orgasms since I started to crawl. I am on anti-depressants and I always thought everyone was having what I have. But I suffered from low self esteem and I am very self conscious of myself all the time.

I am extremely embarrassed by this and I feel I can't even mow the front lawn for my husband anymore. I have always isolated myself from loved ones and friends because of this. Please give me some advice?

By anon262726 — On Apr 20, 2012

I am a 65 year old healthy, active woman in a good relationship with a fiance. I have occasionally experienced spontaneous orgasms in my sleep. This is always related to a very stressful situation in a dream and resolves as I wake up, with no feelings of sexual arousal whatsoever.

What is concerning to me is that last week, when I was suddenly under extreme stress in public (lost driving a car), I experienced two spontaneous orgasms one after another.

This was very embarrassing to me, even though no one noticed. What is going on?

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