Sometimes you have a sex question that's not just, you know, an idle passing thought. In America today, it's all about anal. It's not just a highly sought-after porn genre, though—more and more Americans are giving it the old college try IRL, too. As anal has increased in popularity, curiosity and concern about the potential long-term effects of being on the receiving end of it—or, as some call it, "bottoming"—have also spiked. I've seen this firsthand in my work as a sex educator, where questions on this topic have been on an upward trend, both in my classes and in my email inbox. The specifics of the questions have certainly varied, but most can be reduced to one thing: "Will anal sex mess up my butt?
February 11, Engaging in the practice of anal sex may increase risks for bowel problems, including fecal incontinence and bowel leakage, according to a University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Medicine study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology. The incontinence risk is heightened particularly among men who have sex with men, according to lead author Alayne Markland, D. The researchers analyzed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys from 6, adults. They found 37 percent of women and almost 5 percent of men reported trying anal intercourse at least once. Women engaging in anal sex were 50 percent more likely than their peers to report having fecal incontinence at least once a month. The men's odds of incontinence were almost tripled.
As more couples explore this type of sex, understanding the risks, rewards, and proper strategy is important. According to the Centers for Disease Control CDC , anal sex is primarily growing in popularity with couples under age You might think of anal sex as anal penetration with a penis, but you have a few more options.
Plus the one precaution you should always take. While research suggests anal isn't quite as prevalent as pop culture might suggest—a study found that just To find out more, we spoke with ob-gyn Lauren F.