Certain therapies may help extend the time before ejaculation during masturbation and partner sex, including biofeedback, pelvic floor exercises like Kegels, certain condoms, and more.

When it comes to partner sex, there are a lot of areas where doubt can creep in. One common topic, especially for people with penises, is lasting long enough in bed.

You may just want to increase how long your sexual encounters last. Or maybe you experience premature ejaculation, which causes you to climax faster than you’d like.

Either way, the following tips and tricks may help you enjoy a longer sexual encounter.

Biofeedback is a process to retrain your brain and is used in a few different therapeutic areas. When it comes to premature ejaculation, biofeedback involves measuring electrical signals in the brain during masturbation or other forms of stimulation.

If you want to try biofeedback, you’ll need to visit a physical therapist or doctor’s office that specializes in or has experience with the technique. They will use the measurements to help guide you in performing visualizations, exercises, or other techniques to help you last longer during sex.

Dr. Philip Werthman, urologist and director of the Center for Male Reproductive Medicine and Vasectomy Reversal in Los Angeles, CA, says this is a viable solution for some people.

Edging is the non-medical version of biofeedback. With edging, you masturbate to bring yourself to just about ejaculation (or the “edge”) and then stop all stimulating activity.

The idea is for you to become comfortable and knowledgeable about your sexual arousal so you can prevent unintended ejaculation.

Edging may also enhance your sexual experience once you do ejaculate.

Your pelvic floor muscles help support both your bladder and ejaculation. Exercises that help strengthen this muscle group may help improve your ability to delay ejaculation.

According to Dr. Christopher Asandra, chief medical officer at NuMale Medical Center, Kegel exercises may be able to help people with penises as much as they do people with vulvas. But they require a consistent commitment. They work by strengthening the pubococcygeus muscle.

“To do Kegel exercises, flex the same muscle you would use to stop the flow of urine,” he said. “Clench this muscle for 10 seconds, then release, aiming for at least three sets of 10 reps each day.”

Desensitizing creams, gels, and other products work to lessen the sensations in your penis.

These products may also affect your sexual partner, so be sure to wipe or clean off the product from the penis before stimulation.

Asandra says there’s one product he recommends, called Promescent, that absorbs well enough so your partner isn’t affected.

Before you use a desensitizer, it’s important to note that these products typically contain local anesthetics, which can prove dangerous if used too frequently or in excess.

Always follow the recommendations on the product, or better yet, consult with a doctor before use.

Adult circumcision, or the removal of the foreskin, may also be an option.

A 2015 study showed promising results for people who got circumcised. They noted that many of the people in the study found an increased control over when they orgasm or a positive effect on premature ejaculation once circumcised.

Consulting a doctor with experience in circumcisions may help you decide if this method is right for you.

Masturbation may help with preventing premature ejaculation. If you masturbate shortly before partner sex, you may find that you can delay ejaculation during partner play.

You also might find that you can use masturbation as a therapeutic massage. According to a small 2019 study, researchers found that penis-root masturbation may help you delay ejaculation.

They found that stimulating the root of the penis until ready to ejaculate and then backing off helped to increase the time it took to ejaculate during penetrative sex.

To perform penis-root masturbation, place both thumbs near the base of your penis and rub both in a circular motion or up and down. You need to continue the motion until you are just about to ejaculate and then back off.

Maintaining a moderate weight may improve your performance in bed.

According to a 2017 study, researchers found that people with three or more of the following conditions have an increased likelihood of premature ejaculation:

“We know that obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes are major causes of erectile dysfunction, so treating the underlying problem may be beneficial,” said Werthman.

Certain dietary changes may also help you delay ejaculation.

According to Werthman, some specific foods may increase the amount of free testosterone in your body, which is necessary for healthy erectile function.

“Certain foods, like fenugreek (an herb), can increase free testosterone,” he said. “As a matter of fact, fenugreek is the source of the compounds called Testofen, found in many over-the-counter supplements.”

Note: An increase in free testosterone does not definitively correlate to lasting longer in bed (or “longer ejaculatory latency”), so this method may not prove as fruitful as others.

As with any dietary change, it’s a good idea to run your decision by your doctor first, as they may know if any specific herbs or supplements could interact with medications you’re already taking.

You may think of penile-vaginal or penile-anal sex as your ultimate goal when you start to become intimate with your partner — but rushing to the goal may be part of the problem.

If you find you prematurely ejaculate when engaging in penetrative sex, focusing on other activities, like oral sex or sensual touch, may help.

You also may want to skip penis-in-vagina sex altogether. According to a 2017 study, about 18% of women experience orgasm from penetration. The rest needed direct clitoris stimulation to orgasm, which means other sexual activities may help both you and your partner feel satisfied.

The squeeze technique may help you prevent ejaculation when simply stopping stimulation will no longer work.

To perform this technique, you need to:

  • discontinue manual stimulation or withdraw your penis from your partner
  • use your hand to apply firm pressure to the tip of your penis
  • return to sexual activity when the need to ejaculate passes

You can do this once or several times during sexual activity to help delay ejaculation.

If you plan to do this during partner sex, let them know what you’re doing. You may also want to figure out additional ways to stimulate them so they remain aroused.

You may have heard friends or others talking about focusing on non-sexual things to prevent ejaculation or orgasm.

Instead, Amanda Holmberg, LMFT, clinic director at the Sexual Wellness Institute, suggests you should “stay present in the moment with your body.”

“This will help you decide what you need,” she said. “Maybe you need to go a little slower; maybe you need to take a little bit of a break completely… you can’t do any of that if you’re thinking about baseball stats.”

In other words, staying focused on the task may help you find the solution to managing premature ejaculation.

As part of being more in tune with your body, you should consider how aroused you’re going into sex.

“If you are trying to last longer during penetrative sex, don’t penetrate at a higher arousal level,” Holmberg said. “This is not setting you up for success. Penetrate at a medium arousal level to give yourself some room to grow and enjoy the pleasure.”

If you’re overly aroused when you start being intimate, your chances of premature ejaculation increase greatly.

Condoms can help desensitize the penis. If your usual brand isn’t making a difference, you could try desensitizing condoms.

Desensitizing condoms often contain extra material or some of the ingredients in desensitizing sprays and creams.

As an added benefit, condoms remain one of the best ways to reduce the risk of sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancy.

In certain cases, antidepressant medications known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) can sometimes be used to treat premature ejaculation, says Asandra.

“Medications like SSRIs, such as Prozac, Paxil, and Zoloft, can delay orgasm in men, but they can also cause problems,” he explains. “These drugs take hours before they’re effective and can sometimes cause unwanted side effects like dizziness, drowsiness, erectile dysfunction, and decreased libido.”

While a 2016 study found that most of the antidepressants had either limited effect or not enough evidence to support their use for premature ejaculation, other studies have shown some benefits.

A 2019 review of studies featuring Paroxetine, an SSRI, as a treatment for premature ejaculation found that the drug performed better than placebo and had relatively mild side effects.

Because the research around using SSRIs to treat premature ejaculation is mixed, and side effects can occur, if you’re working with a doctor to treat this condition, medication may be one of your last options to try.

If all else fails, you can try switching up the position you’re in. This can be enjoyable, confidence-boosting, and informative.

For example, you may find that having your partner on top may help with reducing stimulation. You can experiment until you find a position that helps prolong your climax and provides pleasure for your partner.

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to how long sexual activity should last. What matters most is that all partners feel satisfied and comfortable.

Open communication with your partner can lead to a more fulfilling sexual experience. Focus on pleasure and intimacy rather than a specific timeframe.

Does drinking water make you last longer in bed?

Drinking water is important for overall health and well-being, including sexual health. Still, there is no direct evidence to suggest that it can delay ejaculation or boost your overall endurance.

Does ibuprofen make you last longer in bed?

Ibuprofen is a pain reliever and anti-inflammatory medication. While it may help with discomfort or inflammation, it is not known to have any significant impact on sexual performance or duration.

Premature ejaculation is a fairly common condition, with about 30–75% of people with male anatomy reportedly affected by it.

There’s no shame in consulting a professional to discuss your symptoms and how to manage them. Premature ejaculation could be a sign of an underlying condition, such as a hormonal imbalance or other sexual dysfunction, that requires treatment.