Fingering

Want to get clued up on this sexual technique? Read the info below...

First and foremost, make sure both partners are comfortable. Everyone is different and enjoys different things

What is it?

Fingering is a sexual technique where someone touches another's genitals or anus using their fingers. The outside of a female vagina (the vulva) is packed with nerve endings that respond to being stroked and rubbed. One or more fingers may be pushed inside the girl's vagina, simulating sex.

Thinking about trying it?

First and foremost, make sure both partners are comfortable. Everyone is different and enjoys different things so good communication is important.

The genitals are highly sensitive areas so make sure your hands are clean and your nails aren't going to scratch your partner. Don't just plunge in - it can be very uncomfortable, or even painful if there's too much pressure - particularly when dealing with the clitoris. Go slowly and check it feels good for both of you.

Touch gently and try changing your motions to see what gets the most response. You'll soon learn what your partner likes (and isn't so keen on).

Things to remember

You can't get pregnant from fingering. Nor does it mean you've lost your virginity, although a girl's hymen may break.

It's still illegal before the age of 16. And forcing fingers into someone can be considered rape at any age.

STIs may spread if fingers go from one set of genitals straight to the next. The risk of infection is higher if either person has cuts or broken skin that come into contact with the partner.

Never be nagged into it - remember to respect yourself, always. Ultimately it's a pleasurable experience so if you're uncomfortable, say no.

BBC Advice factfiles are here to help young people with a broad range of issues. They're based on advice from medical professionals, government bodies, charities and other relevant groups. Follow the links for more advice from these organisations.

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