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Pteronphilia describes sexual arousal that stems from being tickled by feathers. The term is a combination of the Ancient Greek word pteron, which is a bird’s wing, and philia, meaning love.
Pteronphilia is closely related to more general tickling fetishes where people enjoy being tickled by human fingers and by other objects.
Pterenophiles are particularly aroused when feathers are used to tickle sensitive parts of their body such as the inner thighs and armpits. They tend to enjoy the feeling of feathers because they are softer and more effective at teasing the body than fingers. Some pteronophiles even reach orgasm through feather tickling. Prolonged tickling by feathers is known as tickle torture.
While it’s an uncommon fetish, pteronophilia does not generally receive treatment unless it starts to significantly affect a person’s professional life and relationships. In these cases, pteronophiles may undergo hypnosis or cognitive and behavioral therapy to cure the condition.