Q: Is giving oral sex bad? Why is it looked down upon?
A: There is nothing bad or unhealthy about giving or receiving oral sex. Oral sex is very safe, sanitary and (of course) pleasurable! It can especially be a great way of increasing the probability of a woman orgasming during sex.
Oral sex has had a bad rap for a while, at least in Western cultures. Especially before the 1960s, it was seen as being unhealthy and “contaminating.” This is likely because people were misinformed about the “dangers” of oral sex. Many people believed that having oral sex would lead to disease and even disabilities, such as blindness. Of course, there’s no evidence for this whatsoever. Also, many religious groups were against oral sex, because it doesn’t lead to procreation (pregnancy).
However, oral sex tends to be viewed much more positively now, by scientists and non-scientists alike. It’s also one of the most common types of sexual activity performed now-a-days. Most people report having oral sex before they have vaginal-penile sex, and it has been shown to help teens prolong the time before they start engaging in vaginal sex. So, it can help decrease teen pregnancy rates. Also, it’s much safer in terms of STI transmission as well.
Answers provided by Dr. Ross Avilla
Dr. Ross Avilla has been teaching Human Sexuality since 2013 and has a PhD in psychology from UC Davis. Dr. Avilla is not a clinician and all information and advice offered on this website is for educational purposes only.