Female Sexual Medicine

Sensate Focus

Sensate focus is an exercise that couples can do to enhance intimacy in their relationship. It is primarily used to alleviate anxiety related to intercourse. It is very effective in the treatment of desire, arousal, and orgasmic disorders. Typically, it takes 20-60 minutes 2 to 3 times a week for 6 weeks to complete the exercise.

Each session should be carried out in a private environment without the possibility of interruption. Ideally, the couple should be completely undressed. If this causes anxiety, undergarments may be worn during the first stage. Create a romantic environment with music/candles.

Week 1-2: The couple takes turns exploring the other’s body and face. The genitalia and breasts should be avoided. The purpose of the exercise is to pay attention to tactile sensation. It is the individual’s responsibility to tell the other person what feels good to them. Sexual intercourse and orgasms are not permitted during weeks 1-2.

Week 3-4: Begin with week 1-2 exercises. Breast and genital stimulation are included this week. Self-stimulation, mutual self-stimulation, and orgasms are also permitted.

Week 5-6: Begin with week 1-4 exercises. Intercourse is permitted this week. Start slowly in a comfortable position. If anxiety or pain occurs, try going back to exercises from weeks 1-4 until an appropriate comfort level is gained in order to attempt intercourse again.

Gynecology Clinic
900 Blake Wilbur Drive
Stanford, CA 

Phone (650) 725-6079
Fax (650) 723-6046


Days & Hours
Monday through Friday
8:30 A.M.to 5:00 P.M.