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The clitoris is just like the penis...wait, what?!?


When a woman looks down there, she certainly wouldn't think her lady bits look anything like a man's. And they don't. But when it comes to anatomy and physiology, the clitoris is just like the penis. Wait, what?!?


During early embryologic development, both sexes look the same. Around eight weeks of gestation, if the embryo makes testosterone and the tissues respond normally to testosterone (abnormal response to testosterone in a genetic male is a whole other topic), then the same basic parts gets rearranged into a penis. In the absence of testosterone, the tissues become the clitoris. Both the clitoris and the penis have a head, or glans, and paired corpora cavernosa that contain erectile tissue (yes, women get erections too--is your mind blown yet?). Unlike the glans penis, the glans of the clitoris has an extremely high concentration of nerve endings which is why the clitoris has only one main function: sexual pleasure. The number of nerve endings in the glans of the clitoris is twice as much as the glans of the penis making this part of a woman's body the OG of G spots.


During arousal, the blood flow into the genitals increases while the outflow decreases. The result is engorgement and erection of the clitoris. A substance that plays an important role in genital arousal is nitric oxide. Nitric oxide regulates relaxation of blood vessels. When the blood vessels are relaxed, more blood can flow through them which ultimately results in engorgement of the genitals during arousal. L-arginine is actually converted in to nitric oxide which is why l-arginine is often used supplements for sexual function. It's also why GLISSANT Intimate Lubricant contains l-arginine.


Another interesting factoid? The clitoral hood or prepuce, is analogous to the foreskin. The clitoral hood is the skin that covers the clitoris and is connected to the labia minora. When you get aroused and the clitoris becomes engorged with blood, the hood is passively pushed out of the way which helps keep the skin from getting stuck in place (clitoral adhesions or clitoral phimosis) and it also allows any debris that collects under there to come out -- don't think about it too much or you'll get grossed out. The clitoral hood likely serves a protective function since the glans clitoris is so sensitive. Imagine not having a clitoral hood and your jeans rubbing against your clitoris all day-. It might feel good for a hot minute then it's just going to hurt.


Although I do agree with the saying that women are from Venus and men are from Mars, when it comes to "down there" men and women are very much alike.

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