According to Time, men have located the clitoris—in the brain, that is. Though the sensory regions of the male brain were first mapped in the 1950s, a new study sought to determine the parts of the brain activated upon feeling sensation in women’s sex organs and erogenous zones.
While a group of 11 women stimulated their clitoris, vagina, and cervix, both manually and with sex toys, researchers used an fMRI machine to track the corresponding brain activity. (Note to self: find a similar study to participate in ASAP.) The brain scan revealed that stimulation of the vagina and cervix lit up the same area of the brain, while the clitoris corresponded to a different region. As the areas that were activated corresponded roughly to those indicated during genital stimulation in men, the findings were unsurprising. Interestingly enough, however, sensation from the nipples also appeared in the region of the brain that corresponds to genital stimulation. Time explains that there are two probable causes for this: one, that the oxytocin produced through feeling nipple sensation can indirectly cause genital stimulation through the uterine contractions it can produce and two, that sensory pathways from the nipples could possibly converge with those from the clitoris, vagina, and cervix in the brain, meaning that there’s direct wiring from the nipples to the brain. Either way, the message is fairly clear to us—touching the nipples is a must during sex. Don’t ignore these little pleasure centers.
Read more about the history of the mapping of the sensory brain, as well as an explanation for why foot stimulation feels highly erotic for some, here.