Clitoris suction toys are all the rage on social media. Adult toys such as The Rose and The Penguin are on everyone's Christmas lists. But are they safe to use?
Clit suction toys gained popularity on TikTok during the pandemic lockdowns.
Suction toy makers claim their products guarantee orgasms in 30 seconds or less. That's about 90 seconds faster than most women achieve orgasms with a human partner.
It's easy to see why women are giving themselves a hand with their favorite toys.
Are clit suction toys safe?
Clitoral suction toys work by removing airflow to create a vacuum and apply just the right amount of pressure around the clitoris.
Because the toys provide stimulation and pressure around the clitoris -- rather than directly on the tip -- suction toys provide a different type of stimulation than the conventional vibrator.
Yes, but are they safe?
"Clit pumps are absolutely safe to use," Michael Ingber, MD, tells Women's Health magazine. "Just be sure to use them according to the directions."
Dr. Ingber, a female pelvic medicine specialist in New Jersey, says, while accidents are extremely rare, they can happen. He suggests making sure you know where the release valve is to adjust the pressure. And apply K-Y jelly or a water-based lubricant to the rim to achieve a vacuum-tight seal.
Can clit suction toys cause permanent damage if you overuse it?
Dr. Ingber says there's risk of irritation to the vulva and blood vessel damage if you overdo it.
Experts also say women who use clitoral suction toys run the risk of becoming dependent on the toys and alienating themselves from their partners.
One TikTok user says she broke up with her boyfriend after using her suction toy one time.
Always keep your toys clean
Cleaning your suction toys helps to prevent infection, especially if you use it with a partner. Hard plastic and silicone toys should be cleaned with anti-bacterial soap and water. Toys that are 100% silicone can be placed on the top rack in your dishwasher. Never boil your toys. Always read the instructions before use.
This has been your Medical Minute.