How to Use Sex Toys for Folks with Disabilities

Author: by Alicia Guinn



Sex toys are great tools for disabled people. In fact, silicone dildos (the crème de la crème of dildos) were created in 1971 by Gosnell Duncan, who made them from medical-grade silicone for people in the disabled community.  

What follows are Babeland's top tips for selecting and using sex toys, tailored to the needs of people with various disabilities. So go ahead and try incorporating toys into your sexual repertoire, whether you're a timid beginner or an old pro looking to spice things up. If you want a more comprehensive discussion, pick up the excellent The Ultimate Guide to Sex and Disability.


Honor your Perspective.
Claire Sainsbury's article "No Big Deal (Sex and Disability)" on Scarleteen puts it perfectly: "In a way, having a disability can actually become a positive advantage when it comes to sex. It means that you need to learn how to communicate and be up-front about what works for you and what doesn't. Having to change and adapt the standard 'script' means you have to be flexible and creative. And you have to focus on what actually feels best for you and your partner, instead of getting hung up about what's 'normal' or how you're 'supposed' to have sex. And those are the real secrets of great sex for everybody." 


Be Creative.
"My number-one tip for people with disabilities is: be creative," says Eva Sweeney of Queers on Wheels, a non-profit that liberates and empowers physically disabled folks with sex-positive information and support.  Think about adapting toys you see in a store or online. Will a different position resolve the pain you're experiencing?  Will that vibrator work better for you if you prop it up against a pillow?  Will that dildo rock once it's strapped into a harness and attached to a chair? 


Consider Your Needs.
"Disability" encompasses a huge range of issues as far as sex toys are concerned. Maybe you're deaf and you want to ensure that your hearing housemates won't detect the buzz of your new vibrator. Maybe motor control is an issue, and you want a toy that's easy to hold or strap to your finger/hand.Maybe you have chemical sensitivities, and you're worried about the ingredients in sex toy materials. Maybe you have decreased sensation, and you want a toy that provides stronger vibration. Knowing what you need will make shopping a cinch! 


Special Concerns. 
There are some special concerns related to sex toys for folks with disabilities.  People with spinal cord injuries (and their partners) should know about Autonomic Dysreflexia, a dangerous bodily reaction that can result from sexual activity or using a vibrator. People with chemical sensitivities or allergies should become experts in sex toy materials — or let us be the experts for you! 


Ask Questions.
If you're shopping online and want more information about how much a toy weighs, how noisy it is, or exactly how the switch works, you can always contact Babeland Customer Service over e-mail or on the phone. Don't be afraid to ask a question, no matter how strange it may seem.  Everyone has different preferences and needs when it comes to sex toys. We want to help you find something that will work for you! 


Think About Materials.
Sex toy materials are a concern for everyone. They're especially a concern for folks with allergies or chemical sensitivities, and for people worried about easy (or discreet) cleanup. The easiest way to keep a sex toy reliably clean is to put a condom on it. Colored Trustex Condoms are great for toys because they're not lubricated. Just use the lube of your choice on the outside, and cleanup is a snap! Silicone toys are hypo-allergenic, medical-grade, and non-porous. They can be cleaned with regular soap and water, popped in the dishwasher, or boiled to ensure that they're disinfected. 


Hands-free toys.
Hands-free toys are of special interest to some disabled folks. The Love Bumper, used with or without a vibrator like the Mystic Wand or Hitachi Magic Wand, allows you to position/prop your body up for various positions; it's gotten rave reviews from some of our customers with limited mobility or arm/leg strength. Leo is a 100% silicone dildo that suctions to any smooth, hard surface — a chair? the shower wall? — for hands-free use.   Butt plugs in general are designed to be hands-free. The Little Flirt is a slim plug that's perfect for first-time anal play. Aneros toys are patented prostate massagers that rock in your body as you squeeze your PC muscles


Wear It!
Wearable toys like the Fukuoku and the Babeland Remote Vibe Panty can be creative alternatives to conventional vibrators. Vibrating cock rings like the Sonic Ring Kit can be attached to a penis, another toy or to a hand. If your fingers get tired during masturbation, a finger vibe is the perfect way save yourself from tired, strained hands and fingers.Strap-ons are a whole new world in wearable sex toys. Dildo harnesses are equal-opportunity sex toys that can be used by anyone who wants to penetrate a partner. For those with limited hip/leg mobility, the Thigh Harness allows for the wearing partner to remain stationary, while the penetrated partner straddles the dildo-ed thigh. Imagine the possibilities! 


Extend Your Reach.
Sometimes all you need is a toy that helps you reach a little further. The Babeland Orchid G and the Fun Wand have long, curved handles for an easier reach whether you're aiming for your own body or your partner's. The rockin' vibrations of the Hitachi Magic Wand are a blessing for anyone who wants stronger sensations. It's also a great choice because it distributes vibration over a wide area, which means you don't need pin-point accuracy in placing it directly on or near the clit. (Some people joke that it's an effective vibrator just lying in the bed next to you!) 


Play With Sensation.
Some folks yearn for kinky play. Others might be curious about investigating the world of SM to explore new, stronger sensations. If you have decreased sensation and you're at the receiving end of a flogger, clamp, pump, or bondage restraint, make sure both you and your partner follow basic safety rules and keep on top of physical warning signs like cold hands or feet, which can signal loss of circulation.

 

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