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How Porn And Masturbation Is Harming You

How Porn And Masturbation Is Harming You

Author: Gurkan Gurgur
Category: Article
Last Dated: August 8, 2023

HOW PORN AND MASTURBATION IS HARMING YOU

When the lights go off, the screen goes on. Whether we admit it or not, pornography and masturbation are common sexual experiences in today’s society. The prevalence of these practises has been found to be rising among people, both men and women, especially since the invention of the internet. The digital realm has become a destination of enjoying sexual gratification for a large portion of the population. A large survey revealed that almost four out of every five adults indulge in pornography (use).

There is a dark side to all this fun, even though watching porn and masturbating are unquestionably considered to be pleasurable activities alongside sex (some studies claim it is harmless entertainment which is one of the greatest deceits of the 21st Century). Associated (detrimental) consequences have reportedly started to manifest over time, having an impact on both individuals and ultimately society at large. What starts as innocent pleasure-seeking, exacerbates into a serious problem. This is the reason why a closer examination of the situation is necessary before things get too far out of hand.

Porn and masturbation rewires your brain

The brain’s chemistry is complex, and one of its complexities involves the reward systems that respond to pleasurable experiences. A group psychiatrists and a physiologist worked together to explain how this is accomplished through the release of dopamine, the “feel good” chemical. This neurotransmitter respond as natural rewards for activites that is pleasurable or beneficial to you such as eating food, engaging in sexual activity, and other behaviours that are necessary for survival. It is released when your brain is anticipating reward from those acivities. Porn and masturbation also provide a dopamine fix. They are experiences interpreted as pleasures by the brain, which can lead to an excessive release of dopamine as well as other happy hormones like oxytocin and testosterone. These hormones, accorrding to psychology educators and researchers Goldey & van Anders and Uvnäs-Moberg & Peterson, are helpful for stamina, relaxation, stress reduction..

However, Brian Anderson, a cognitive neuroscientist at Johns Hopkins University, theorised that because of the elevated (unnatural) dopamine levels present in the brain while engaging in pornographic activities, your brain becomes more motivated and accustomed to rewarding porn and masturbation over other pleasurable experiences. You (your dopamine receptors) get disruptively rewired to not perceiving any or less pleasure in other experiences. The release of dopamine is no longer enough when doing those things (or at least not as much). You gradually lose interest in the norms and start to show signs of anxiety disorder, stress and depression, thus affecting your mental health. According to a study published in the journal Health Psychology, the number of persons with pornography induced mental disorder continues to rise from previous years, Another is the problem of addiction.

Addiction Problem

This is one of the frequently discussed risks associated with pornography use. Apparently, its introduction and increased accessibility via the internet and other private media platforms, such DVDs, has led to a dependence on porn and masturbation to get a quick fix of dopamine. As soon as the brain’s reward system notices this pattern, it begins to create pleasing pathways where you desire more of it. As you keep doing it more and more, the resistance level rises and you tend to need more. Some Harvard Medical School educators came to the conclusion that this repeating cycle creates addictive patterns that are comparable to drug or alcohol addiction. Blinka et al. understand that some studies would prefer to refer to the same syndrome as out-of-control, problematic excessive, or compulsive masturbation. They went on to associate with it negative consequences, as with conventional addiction. These include guilt, regret, life dissatisfaction, hindrances in daily lives, social withdrawal and feelings of unfulfillement that slowly worsen over years, as well as the onset of some sexual dysfunction. Even it is proved to be a gateway to other addictions.

Sexual Impairment

Porn and masturbation are technically not sex, but shortcuts to pleasure. Cohort of studies have confirmed how unsafe and unhealthy they are, especially to your sexual life and health. One of such studies examine “the first generation of men who grew up with unlimited online porn,” revealing numerous implications of explicit pornographic contents consumption on relationship:

  • Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a common medical problem that every concerned man must know about. ED happens when you are unable to achieve or maintain an erection. Although there are little to no scientific evidence that directly links masturbation to ED, sizable number of men (whose numbers keep increasing) have self-reported that their bodies repond to nothing other than the sight of porn. They are convinced that porn-induced erectile dysfunction (PIED) they now experience is the result of their brains having been virtually marinated in porn when they were adolescents..
  • Premature Ejaculation (PE) is another very common sexual dysfuction in men. As previously discussed, porn amd masturbation increses dopamine production to unnatural levels, which has an effect on arousal and may lead to faster ejaculation.
  • A growing number of evidence suggests that frequent pornography use is linked with lower sexual desire and satisfaction. The reason for this, according to Researchers from Poznan University of Medical Sciences, may include: (a) disappointment when real partners are not interested in recreating pornographic scenes; and (b) disappointment when it is impossible to obtain the same range sexual novelties in pornographic contents with a real partners. These damage your view of your partner, potentially ruining your relationship.

Social Impairment

social impairment, in relation to addiction, has been examined by the American Psychiatric Association to include a decline in various significant social, occupational and recreational activities as well as a failure to fulfil a number of important life obligations (e.g., work, school, or home). When you’re an addict, your brain feels like it’s been hit by a truck – you frequently choose to access pornography and engage in masturbation over engaging in a number of social responsibilities. According to a research, students who had used pornography at some point in their lives exhibited common behaviours, including a disdain for daily responsibilities, a lack of interpersonal connections, a hasty completion of duties (in order to access the websites) and lethargy to go to school or finish school work. Similar to behaviours linked to addiction, individual’s normal daily functioning, especially social behavior tend to be negatively influenced. Some ways that watching porn affects your ability to get along well with other people:

  • A study has shown pornography use to be associated with an increased level of isolation. People are likely to view porn and engage in masturbation when alone or feeling lonely. This is why addicts tend to keep to themselves and hardly ever seek assistance. Sometimes keeping to oneself is not a bad thing, but pornography would push you over a dangerous boundary. Additionally, it is believed that isolation has a negative impact on relationships.
  • Pornography lowers self-esteem and confidence, making you feel like you’re not good enough. Social anxiety and shyness make you feel embarrassed to go out in public, or even leave your home (exhibiting social phobia). Porn users have reported feeling less confident when approaching women.

Hindrance in daily lives

Once pornography use become an addiction, you would be forced to have a daily fix which may will last for a couple of hours, if not longer. You not only invest your energy, which could have been used for other productive pursuits, but also your time. According to a relationship coach, your sexual energy is the greatest and most powerful source of energy you have access to. You can either squander it or use it to your maximum advantage to enhance your life. Pornography and masturbation are inappropriate ways of releasing this energy. They deplete your reservoir of energy, leaving you feeling emotionally and physically drained. Hence the more frequent you release it away through pornography use, the less creative you would be and less productive work you would accomplish. Among the long-term effects of this include decreased stamina and motivation, which cause time wastage, procrastination, and laziness. These hinder us from carrying out our everyday tasks and responsibilities – the essentials such as work and school, and even the recreationals such as shopping or going to the gym. “That’s why some people don’t see much gain in their body even after months of gym,” a study claimed.

Bottom line

Isn’t the simple fact that porn and masturbation increase the possibility of contracting a horrifying case of sexual dysfunction (among other consequences), despite many advocating them as healthy activities, sufficient justification for abstinence? The truth is that porn and masturbation will never allow you to be your best selves. More than what porn has to offer, you deserve better. You deserve real love that hasn’t been contaminated by porn or masturbation. Taking a break (Quitting) from porn and masturbation can have positive benefits for your mind, body and relationships. If you’re struggling with porn or masturbation, there is help available. There are many resources that can help you overcome these problems.

Sources:

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.yhbeh.2010.12.005
https://doi.org/10.13109/zptm.2005.51.1.57
https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/treating-obsessive-compulsive-disorder
https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.1234733
https://doi.org/10.1080/17588928.2015.1047823
https://doi.org/10.1001/archpsyc.62.6.617
https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2022.907549
https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2020.613244
https://doi.org/10.1080/10720162.2012.658343
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/319481496_Porn_and_the_threat_to_virility_The_first_generation_of_men_who_grew_up_with_unlimited_online_porn_sound_the_alarm
https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm8070914
https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/worlds-largest-masturbation-survey-uncovers-how-traditional-views-of-masculinity-prevent-men-from-having-fulfilling-sex-lives–relationships-300638644.html#:~:text=78%20percent%20of%20adults%20in,76%20percent%20of%20American%20women.
https://www.jordangrayconsulting.com/harness-sexual-energy-greater-clarity-contentment/

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