By Billy Curtis, Sex Columnist

Throughout the decades, it has been given many names: giving head, eating out, going down, carpet munching and, of course, the blow job — just to name a few.

Whatever you may call it, oral sex is one of the most pleasurable experiences out there; why do you think it’s considered such a great preamble to intercourse? Foreplay and oral sex can be the best way to get your blood pumping in all the right places for longer nights of bliss, and an even better way to get off while not worrying about pregnancy.

Personally, oral sex, whether as foreplay or just the act itself, is definitely an enlightening activity, and certainly an act I enjoy thoroughly — with the right person.

But not everyone is good at giving head, and like any other skill attained in this world, to become proficient in this art form one simply needs guidance and practice.

Like most first sexual experiences, oral sex can be a little intimidating, but the best way to solve this problem is with communication or even getting a critique of your performance. The only way to get this information is by asking your partner, as oral sex should really only be practiced with someone you trust — as has been my philosophy in life and dating.

Talking about performance after sex can be a great way to improve your “giving” abilities. Some advice if you are doing the talking: be courteous to your partner and respect his or her feelings. Even if they were bad, try and give them words of encouragement and constructive criticism while steering them in the right direction for you.

When you are communicating with your partner about any kind of sex, make sure to tell him or her what you like specifically — after all, none of us are mind readers and everyone has his or her own preference when it comes to how he or she will orgasm.

If you are the recipient of the advice from your partner, here are some words of wisdom: take the information given to you as a recommendation, not as an insult. In the end, when you listen and consider the direction your partner is giving you, odds are that both partners involved will learn something, and you’ll be helping your relationship in the long run, too.

It has always boggled me that, even in the bedroom, it’s difficult for any of us to communicate what we want and need. In order for any relationship to work, there has to be a mutual understanding and openness.

If there were any sexual equivalent to a mutual understanding of you and your partner in the bedroom, it would have to be the notorious 69 position. For those of you who don’t know what this is, it’s when you and your partner perform oral sex on each other at the same time.

While this position is just as outdated as the decade its name references, it shows a sharing quality — I mean, who doesn’t love giving pleasure to his or her partner while receiving it?

If you’ll be letting just about anyone into your little secret garden, remember that you run the risk of contracting anything from chlamydia to HIV, so be smart when giving or receiving oral sex.

Also, communication is needed in the bedroom just as much as in any relationship. If you’re not communicating your wants and needs . . . well then, you’re just getting your privates slobbered on.