Releasing gas
Q: Hi, I was wondering if there is anything that could be done about my problem. During sex I tend to let off a lot of gas and it is quite embarrassing - it makes me self conscious and I concentrate more on not doing that than enjoying myself. The problem becomes worse the closer I get to climaxing so I tend to avoid that. My boyfriend doesn't mind - but it bugs me. Is there anything I can do about this?

A: Is it gas or merely "fanny farts"? Fanny farts commonly happen to everyone with penetration. Air is pushed into the vagina during penetration and as the man pulls out and then in again, so air is expelled and this sound is made. If it is truly gas, try emptying your bowels before penetration - see if this makes a difference at all. I would hate for anything to stop you, inhibit your pleasure and orgasm.

Masturbation addiction

Q: I recently had sex for the first time with my girlfriend but I didn't enjoy it. Now my girlfriend does not want to see me again. My problem is that I used to masturbate a lot and I don't want to have sex again because I feel comfortable masturbating. Is masturbation addiction healthy?

A: Masturbation can be a problem when it takes the place of a relationship, or when it stops you having a relationship or sex with an-other person. It is common that when men get used to masturbation it can feel very different , even less satisfying being sexual with a person. This can be problematic - if the man wants a relationship with someone. Perhaps you are generally a solitary man, a man who enjoys his own company. This is perfectly fine if this is your choice. I wonder if you struggle to make friends, to and to socialise?

Perhaps sex with someone, intimacy with someone is intimidating for yo. Maybe you just do not feel confident about yourself as a lover. I wonder if you even like women - perhaps you like or are sexually attracted to men... I’m guessing here, giving you some ideas to think about. This really is your choice to make. And in terms of your masturbation addiction I am always afraid when people take on this label-- if it interferes with not only your relationships but your everyday world, if you feel you have no power over this activity then seek professional help.

Anal pleasure
Q: Do women enjoy anal sex? What are the hygiene issues when it comes to it? Can a woman reach orgasm through anal sex?

A: Every woman has her unique sexual enjoyment. So this is a discussion that lovers need to have together. Couples should be exploring as they feel comfortable and relaxed around each other. Anal play is a popular sexual pleasure. And only when one starts playing around does one know if one does or does not enjoy it. Remember NEVER force a woman into any sexual activity. If your woman says upfront:"I do not want to try anal sex". Then you let it go... Hygiene is important and more importantly, safety.

Condom use is non-negotiable with anal sex. Tearing, exchanging of body fluids is common and in this way infections can be transmitted. Always use water based lubricant with any anal play, even if you are only inserting a finger into a woman's anus. Women can indeed have orgasms with anal sex. But that does not mean every woman does. She has a better chance of becoming orgasmic if you /she uses a clitoral or/and vaginal toy at the same time.

Am I still a virgin?
Q: I’m an 18 year-old virgin and I started having a very strange feeling. I ended up putting my finger in my vagina to get sexual satisfaction. Does this mean I am no longer a virgin?

A:You are indeed a virgin. Of course you want to insert your finger into your vagina. It feels wonderful, you are exploring yourself. This is healthy. It will enable you to be a more responsible and in- charge sexual partner. "Feeling strange" means 'feeling sexy/horny". Do not feel ashamed about this. There is nothing strange about this!

Smelly discharge
Q: Is it normal for a woman to have a consistent vaginal discharge? My long term girlfriend states that all women have this discharge. Is this true? This is thick and white and most time it give a bad odour during sex. She says it's not thrush and does not have its associated symptoms. I have been with other women before and did not experience this.

The odour is an absolute turn-off for me and although I enjoy giving Bj's, it's not in the cards for her. I can also state that she practices good hygiene. This does not seem to bother her and I don't want to hurt her feelings. Additionally it's also not the normal 'fishy' scent of a woman, it's totally different. What I state here is with all due respect to all women. Please advice.

A: Vaginal discharge is totally normal because the glands inside your vagina produce fluid and this also carries out the old vaginal lining, thereby keeping your vagina healthy and clean. This type of discharge does not smell bad and may be clear or milky and vary according to one's monthly cycle, during breastfeeding or when sexually excited. There are several possible causes for the discharge and odour.

These include bacterial vaginosis, the symptoms of which include a vaginal discharge with a strong odor, which is strongest after sex or washing with soap (soap and excessive "hygiene “may in fact heighten the problem), itching or burning and a slight swelling of the vagina or vulva. A doctor may correctly diagnose this and prescribe the appropriate antibiotics to treat it. Another possible cause is Trichomoniasis, caused by an organism called Trichomonas vaginalis.

Trichomonas vaginalis can show no overt symptoms for a long time. Whatever the case, I get from your email that you are a caring and respectful lover who wants to offer you partner oral pleasure, but the discharge and odor are off-putting to you. Your partner needs to get the appropriate medical assistance in dealing with the issue so you can both explore the full potential of your sexual love.

Do you have more questions that you are ashamed to ask? Why don't you ask our sex experts, Dr Eve, Dr Lorraine Becker and Marina Green?