Free Porn Ruins Men’s Sex Lives, But Not Women’s, Says New Research

Excessive pornography viewing is likely to contribute to a risk of sexual dysfunction in men, but not women, according to new research. A panel discussion and presentation held on Friday at the 112th Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Urological Association highlights results from surveys conducted on men and women about pornography viewing habits and the long-term effects on sexual health and intimate behavior.

The researchers, led by Dr. Matthew Christman, a staff urologist and program director for pediatric urology at the Naval Medical Center of San Diego, report that while pornography trivially affects women’s sex lives, an excessive habit can be ruinous to men’s psychosexual health. Essentially, many men who are really into internet porn have the potential to become disinterested in sex with a real-life partner. The researchers suggest that the more time men spend on sites such as PornHub, the less able they’ll be to connect with a partner in the bedroom. This can result in severe damage to sexual and romantic relationships and make intimacy challenging, at best.

porn New research suggests many men prefer pornography over sex with a partner in real life. Issei Kato/REUTERS

The presentation was based on two surveys. In one, researchers administered self-reported questionnaires to women aged 20 to 40 who were patients at a military urology clinic. A majority of the women who took part in the survey were white, married, heterosexual and on active military duty. Roughly 40 percent of women who participated claimed to use pornography at least occasionally, with a quarter reporting to use it less than once weekly.

The findings of the accompanying study on men raised more concern. Through surveys administered to 312 male patients of the same age group  (also mostly white, married and heterosexual), the researchers found a close correlation between excessive pornography use and sexual dysfunction. Roughly 20 percent of men reported using porn three to five times weekly. Nearly 4 percent of men reported they preferred masturbating to pornography over having sexual intercourse with a partner. The researchers also recognized a correlation between men who used pornography frequently and those who reported lack of sexual desire and intercourse satisfaction, as well as erectile dysfunction.

The two surveys also shed light on how both men and women are choosing to consume pornography online. In both surveys, more than half of study participants (55 percent of women and 62 percent of men) said they viewed porn on their smartphone.

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