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Discussions of female orgasm are complicated by the fact that, perhaps artificially, orgasm in women has sometimes been labeled as two different things:
the clitoral orgasm and the vaginal orgasm.
The concept of vaginal orgasm as a separate phenomenon was first postulated by Sigmund Freud. In 1905, Freud stated that clitoral orgasm was purely an adolescent phenomenon, and upon reaching puberty the proper response of mature women was a change-over to vaginal orgasms, meaning orgasms without any clitoral stimulation. While Freud provided no evidence for this basic assumption, the consequences of this theory were considerable. Many women felt inadequate when they could not achieve orgasm via vaginal intercourse alone, involving little or no clitoral stimulation, as Freud's theory made man's penis central to a woman's sexual satisfaction.
In contrast to Freud's thoughts, most women can only achieve orgasm through clitoral stimulation. The clitoris surrounds the vagina somewhat like a horseshoe, and has "legs" that extend along the vaginal lips back to the anus. The urethral sponge runs along the "roof" of the vagina, and it can be stimulated through the vagina, but the vagina itself is considered to have no mechanism to stimulate pleasure or orgasm for women. Negating clitoral legs, only one part of the clitoris, the urethral sponge, is in contact with the penis, fingers, or a dildo in the vagina. "The tip of the clitoris and the inner lips, which are also very sensitive, are not receiving direct stimulation during intercourse." The Gräfenberg Spot, or G-Spot, is a small area behind the female pubic bone surrounding the urethra and accessible through the anterior wall of the vagina. The size of this spot appears to vary considerably from person to person. Such an orgasm is referred to as "vaginal," because it results from stimulation inside the vagina.
In 1966, Masters and Johnson published pivotal research about the phases of sexual stimulation. Their work included women and men, and unlike Alfred Kinsey earlier (in 1948 and 1953), tried to determine the physiological stages before and after orgasm. Masters and Johnson observed that both clitoral and vaginal orgasms had the same stages of physical response. They argued that clitoral stimulation is the primary source of both kinds of orgasms.
Likewise, recent discoveries about the size of the clitoris show that clitoral tissue extends some considerable distance inside the body, around the vagina. This discovery may possibly invalidate any attempt to claim that clitoral orgasm and vaginal orgasm are two different things. The link between the clitoris and the vagina reinforces the idea that the clitoris is the 'seat' of the female orgasm. It is now clear that clitoral tissue is far more widespread than the small visible part most people associate with the word. The main researcher of the studies, Australian urologist Dr. Helen O'Connell, asserts that this interconnected relationship is the physiological explanation for the conjectured G-Spot and experience of vaginal orgasm, taking into account the stimulation of the internal parts of the clitoris during vaginal penetration.
"The vaginal wall is, in fact, the clitoris," said O'Connell. "If you lift the skin off the vagina on the side walls, you get the bulbs of the clitoris – triangular, crescental masses of erectile tissue." The idea had been that the clitoris is more than just its glans – the "little hill". It is possible that some women have more extensive clitoral tissues and nerves than others, and therefore whereas many women can only achieve orgasm by direct stimulation of the external parts of the clitoris, for others the stimulation of the more generalized tissues of the clitoris via intercourse may be sufficient.
Women's orgasms have been estimated to last, on average, approximately 20 seconds, and to consist of a series of muscular contractions in the pelvic area that includes the vagina, the uterus and the anus. For some women, on some occasions, these contractions begin soon after the woman reports that the orgasm has started and continue at intervals of about one second with initially increasing, and then reducing, intensity. In some instances, the series of regular contractions is followed by a few additional contractions or shudders at irregular intervals. In other cases, the woman reports having an orgasm, but no pelvic contractions are measured at all.
extract from Wikipedia