Leone Centre Glossary

Anorgasmia in Psychosexual Therapy


Anorgasmia, or the persistent inability to achieve orgasm, is a sexual dysfunction that can affect both men and women. It can lead to significant distress, impacting self-esteem, relationships, and overall wellbeing. Recognising the complexities of anorgasmia is essential for those seeking to address this condition through psychosexual therapy.

Common challenges

Individuals with anorgasmia often experience frustration, anxiety, and strain in their intimate relationships. The inability to reach orgasm despite adequate sexual stimulation can lead to feelings of inadequacy and emotional disconnect with partners.

Definition and overview

Anorgasmia is characterised by the persistent difficulty or inability to achieve orgasm. This condition can be classified as primary (lifelong), secondary (acquired), situational (occurring in specific situations or with specific partners), or generalised (occurring in all situations).

Therapeutic benefits

Psychosexual therapy helps address anorgasmia by exploring psychological, emotional, and physical factors. Therapists work with individuals and couples, using education, communication improvement, and personalised exercises to enhance sexual wellbeing and intimacy. It provides a safe space to discuss sexual concerns, reduce anxiety, and improve partner understanding.

Therapeutic process

The therapeutic process for anorgasmia typically involves several stages, including:

  1. Initial assessment to understand the individual’s sexual history and current challenges.
  2. Identifying psychological barriers such as anxiety, past trauma, or relationship issues.
  3. Education on sexual response and ways to enhance sexual experiences.
  4. Exercises to improve physical responses and communication practices to enhance intimacy.


What is anorgasmia?
Anorgasmia is the persistent inability to achieve orgasm despite adequate sexual stimulation and arousal.
How can psychosexual therapy help with anorgasmia?
Psychosexual therapy helps identify and address psychological, emotional, and physical factors contributing to anorgasmia, offering education, communication practices, and guided exercises.
Are there different types of anorgasmia?
Yes, anorgasmia can be primary (lifelong) or secondary (acquired), and it can be situational or generalised.


  1. NHS. (2023). Anorgasmia
  2. Levine, S. B. (2010). Sexual Life: A Clinician’s Guide. Springer.
  3. British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH). (2021). BASHH Guidelines
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This glossary provides definitions of various counselling terms and approaches for informational purposes only, without implying endorsement or service provision