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Updated 28 August 2015

What are alternative sexual practices?

Many readers who write in to the sex forum ask questions about fetishes and things like S&M. What are these?

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Many readers who write in to the sex forum ask questions about fetishes and things like S&M. What are these?

The following extracts from the sexologist's glossary should provide some insights:

Autoerotica: Self-induced arousal and/or stimulation.

Autoerotic asphyxiation: The purposeful decrease of oxygen during sexual activity, usually with the goal of increasing the intensity of the orgasm.

Bestiality: Also called zoophilia. Sexual activity with an animal. Illegal in South Africa.

Bondage and discipline(B & D): Physical or symbolic containment or constriction of any part of the body as part of erotic play.

Cock ring: A ring usually made of rubber or leather that is worn at the base of the penis to prolong erection by restricting blood flow out of the penis.

Coprophilia: The eroticism and use of excrement in sexual activities.

Cross-dressing: Wearing the clothing of the opposite sex for sexual or non-sexual purposes.

Devotee: A person whose erotic preference is focused on individuals who have some sort of physical impairment (e.g. amputation, wheelchair-bound, etc.).

Dominatrix: A woman who professionally takes on the role of dominating her clients through S&M, B&D and/or humiliation.

Exhibitionism: The act of sexual arousal through exposing one's genitals or body.

Fisting: A sexual act that involves the insertion of the hand and sometimes the forearm into the vagina or anus.

Frotteurism: Sexual arousal that occurs when an individual purposely rubs against others.

Golden showers: Also known as watersports. The act of urinating on a partner's body or watching the act as part of sexual stimulation.

Masochism: The desire to experience pain and/or humiliation for sexual gratification. The term comes from the writings of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch.

Necrophilia: Sexual arousal through contact with a corpse.

Paraphilia: Also known as erotic preference and previously as 'deviant' sexual behaviour. A preference for an erotic stimulus that is not considered to be normal practice.

Paedophilia: Fantasy or act in which children are the preferred sexual objects.

Sadism: The infliction of the sensation of pain in order to achieve sexual excitement. The term was developed from the writings of Marquis de Sade.

S&M: Erotic activity/play based upon the principles of sadism and masochism.

Snuff films: Films that depict the real-life murder of one of the actors, often in combination with sexual scenarios.

Urophilia: Derivation of sexual excitement through contact with urine.

Vouyerism: Sexual gratification from watching sexual activities performed by others.

Also read:

What your fantasies say about you

The sex addiction cycle

9 Sex questions

 
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