Analingus - more commonly referred to as "rimming" - is a type of oral sex where the giving partner’s tongue stimulates a sexual partner's anus or perineum. It may also be referred to as tossing the salad, or giving a rim job.
People who enjoy analingus are into it because it can be very pleasurable due to the high concentration of nerve endings in the anal area. A 2016 study found that 30% of couples had engaged in anal stimulation in the past year, compared to just 14% who reported engaging in anal sex.
Analingus can be part of foreplay or a standalone sex act. Some people find analingus a good way to become comfortable with the anus before attempting anal sex, but there is no need to transition from analingus to anal sex or any other sexual activity.
In many ways, giving or receiving a rim job is safer than many other sexual activities, but analingus does carry some risks. Because fecal bacteria may be found on the anus and perineum, giving partners may contract gastrointestinal illnesses. Analingus can also spread sexually transmitted infections (STIs), such as herpes and syphilis. Giving partners can reduce their risk by using dental dams, plastic wrap, or tongue condoms and getting vaccinated against hepatitis A. Maintaining good oral health is also important, as oral problems such as bleeding gums and lip sores provide entry points for infections. Receiving partners can do their part by bathing prior to analingus.