Prone Masturbation: Risk of Erectile Dysfunction

Prone Masturbation

Recent research indicates that the growing problem of Internet-prone masturbation usage, particularly among men, is directly related to obsessive sexual behavior. Additionally, some research indicates that watching porn online may serve as a protective mechanism against high levels of stress, allowing users to manage stressful situations, regulate their moods, and experience fewer episodes of anxiety and despair. This suggests that psychosocial stress and possibly traumatic experiences may play a significant role in Internet pornography addiction. Users of online pornography involved in these activities also reported that their self-exposition to pornographic material may create guilty feelings and internal conflict within themselves concerning their own “involuntary” sexual behavior. When combined, these results demonstrate a substantial correlation between the intake of pornography and stressful events, anxiety, and depression. Furthermore, there is a considerable correlation between identity issues, conflicting emotional experiences, an increased susceptibility to addictive sexual behavior, and the intake of pornography.

According to recent studies on pornography addiction, the availability of the Internet has gradually grown, and users’ ability to remain anonymous and private while doing so has greatly increased their consumption of pornography, mostly among men (Burtăverde et al., 2021; Griffiths, 2012; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; Pizzol et al., 2016; Price et al., 2016; Ross et al., 2012; Wright, 2013). The increased accessibility of the Internet has a significant impact on the process of losing self-control, which increases the likelihood of abusing Internet pornography and associated addictive behavior (Block, 2008; Daneback et al., 2006, 2012; Ross et al., 2012). Ross et al. (2012), for instance, reported that three out of five respondents in a research sample that was chosen had an addiction to Internet pornography. The research also found that men who live alone or with their parents are more likely to suffer from this problem (Cooper et al., 2000; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; Price et al., 2016; Ross et al., 2012; Wright, 2013). Furthermore, current research indicates that young adult men use the most pornography on the Internet (Leiblum, 1997; Price et al., 2016; O’Sullivan et al., 2014; Shapiro, 2005; Štulhofer et al., 2016; Wright, 2013).

Prone Masturbation
Prone Masturbation


Studies on the addictive nature of pornography indicate that about 56% of males use it as a way to decompress and reduce their perceived tension (Cooper et al., 2004; Weiser, 2000). According to other research, many people who watch porn online do it primarily to relax sexually and experience a sense of “satisfaction” that comes from masturbating (Ross et al., 2012; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020). Additionally, some research indicates that the addictive behavior associated with Internet pornography may result in subjectively unpleasant sexual experiences, heightened sensitivity to stimuli, and feelings of yearning associated with experiences of masturbation and fetishism (Laier et al., 2013; Ross et al., 2012).

Furthermore, several studies suggest that symptoms of “sexual addiction,” which are associated with compulsive sexual behavior driven by craving, can include an inability to control oneself as well as subjective feelings of internal conflict. These symptoms are strikingly similar to those typically seen in obsessive-compulsive disorders (Goodman, 2001, 2008; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020). These symptoms can identify psychopathological abnormalities connected to processing sexual stimuli and have a deleterious influence on sexual fantasies, attitudes, and behaviors. They are most likely to cause very malignant effects in adolescents (Braun-Courville and Rojas, 2009; Cooper et al., 2004; Kafka, 2010). Additional research reveals that exposure to pornography on the internet presents “artificial” (as opposed to natural) stimuli that don’t align with genuine psychosocial interactions and interpersonal relationships. This could potentially cause atypical emotional reactions (Burtăverde et al., 2021; Laier et al., 2013; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; Ross et al., 2012; Štulhofer et al., 2016).

According to more research, these artificially aroused stimuli can mess up the normal processing of sensory signals in the medial preoptic area, which is the hub of the telo-diencephalic reproductive complex (Kim et al., 2013). This abnormal processing of sexually stimulating stimuli harms the mesolimbic reward center’s neuronal networks (Roxo et al., 2011). These networks are common in addiction mechanisms. Several neuroimaging studies also show that looking at sexually suggestive images over and over (like in pornography) stimulates the medial preoptic area in ways that are similar to watching a real sexual partner in some ways (Hilton and Watts, 2011; Voon et al., 2014). Additionally, the regular and frequent novelty of these pornographic stimuli is a characteristic distinction between “unrelational” and “relational” sexual experiences. The “Coolidge effect,” which refers to the preference for novel sexual partners, has also been extensively studied in both human and animal studies (Fiorino et al., 1997; Wilson, 1997). According to some research (Barrett, 2010; Burtăverde et al., 2021; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; Pitchers et al., 2013), unrestricted access to a vast amount of novel sexual images on the Internet may have a variety of effects on neural processing in the mesolimbic reward center. These effects may be comparable to some of the effects of addictive substances.

About this addictive behavior, dysphoria and/or a sad mood are the primary outcomes of excessive sexual behavior linked to later exposure to pornography (Bancroft et al., 2003; Laier et al., 2013; Peter and Valkenburg, 2011; Ross et al., 2012). Pornography has been shown to influence behaviors, lifestyles, and sexual attitudes, according to a study by Pizzol et al. (2016) that looked at 1500 high school teenage men in their final year of studies. The men were between the ages of 18 and 19. According to Pizzol et al. (2016), the study also revealed that roughly 10% of participants reported having less sexual interest in real-life partnerships and preferring “virtual sex,” which they perceived as faster, safer, less demanding, and more satisfying than real-life partnerships. Additionally, approximately 21.9% of participants reported regularly visiting pornographic websites.

Men typically want more sexual stimuli related to pornography because, as is common in the context of addiction, the brain may not be able to “reorder” itself and return to the previous “sex maps” and normal sensitivity. This process may cause feelings of satisfaction to tend to decline. Sensitization in this sense describes an overreactive, conditioned reaction to stimuli connected to exposure to pornography. with a real partner, no longer eliciting the necessary dopamine release to produce and sustain sexual arousal and erection due to sensitized sexual arousal to Internet pornography. “Erectile problems may occur when real-life sexual stimulation does not match the broad content [accessible online],” according to Prause and Pfaus’s (2015) suggestion. The mesolimbic dopaminergic system may stop some activities if expectations are not met (because of a negative prediction error) in both people and animals, according to studies (Bayer and Glimcher, 2005; Hart et al., 2014; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; McClure et al., 2003; Sunday and Rebec, 2014).

According to Bancroft and Vukadinovic (2004), Burtăverde et al. (2021), Davis (2001), Frangos et al. (2010), Kraus et al. (2018), Pizzol et al. (2016), Sniewski and Farvid (2020), and Young (1998), problematic pornography use is defined as a pattern of pornography viewing that significantly distresses an individual and may negatively affect personal identity and social relationships.

Several studies have also shown that some people purposefully use pornography and other forms of sexual stimulation to divert their attention away from environmental and emotional pressures (Bthe et al., 2020, 2021). Additional research indicates that the tendency to use online pornography may be associated with a reactive stress response and that it may be used as a temporary diversion, a coping mechanism for uncomfortable feelings, or a way to reduce anxiety (Cooper et al., 1999; Giugliano, 2009; Kafka, 1993; Marshall and Marshall, 2000). Research on development also reveals that anxious attachment and sexual compulsion are common in adults who had unfavorable, stressful childhood events (Aaron, 2012).

Research in this context suggests that mood regulation and Internet pornography use are inversely correlated, implying that some individuals may use porn to deal with negative emotions (Laier and Brand, 2017; Willoughby et al., 2019) and that pornography use may be associated with anxiety and depression (Burtăverde et al., 2021; Efrati and Gola, 2018; Frangos et al., 2010; Goodman, 1997; Laier et al., 2013; Levin et al., 2012; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; O’Sullivan et al., 2014; Pepping et al., 2018).

Additionally, a few studies (Angst, 1998; Campbell and Kohut, 2017; Vaillancourt-Morel and Bergeron, 2019) suggested that watching porn could be linked to poorer levels of sexual well-being as well as a variety of emotions such as moral dilemmas, personal insecurity, and anxiety (Bancroft and Vukadinovic, 2004; Davis, 2001; Duffy et al., 2016; Frangos et al., 2010; Grubbs et al., 2019a, 2019b; Hooshmand et al., 2012; Young, 1998). Particularly, those who identify as religious have been found to have moral dilemmas about exposure to pornography (Collins et al., 2004; Grubbs et al., 2010, 2015, 2019a, 2019b; Nie, 2021; Patterson and Price, 2012; Perry, 2018; Štulhofer et al., 2016).

These unfavorable emotions may increase a person’s sense of powerlessness in trying to stop using porn and increase their level of frustration and anxiety (Young et al., 2000). Furthermore, the association between religiosity and a culture that prioritizes sexual purity may intensify this adverse impact, resulting in intense guilt (Grubbs et al., 2015). These results imply that, independent of a person’s religious beliefs, there is a connection between psychological distress associated with a moral dilemma and incongruency brought on by guilt feelings and perceived addiction to Internet pornography (Bradley et al., 2016; O’Sullivan et al., 2014).

According to recent research, excessive pornography consumption can have a serious negative impact on adolescent and childhood sexual development by influencing unrealistic gender stereotypes and behavioral patterns. Although it is not yet recognized as a diagnosable condition, excessive pornography consumption can also have serious negative effects on mental health (Block, 2008; Burtăverde et al., 2021; Mauer-Vakil and Bahji, 2020; O’Sullivan et al., 2014; Ross et al., 2012). Online pornography dependence is not recognized as a distinct syndrome by the current DSM-5; nonetheless, some academics and doctors argue that it may be a component of a hypersexual disease (Kafka, 2010).


What are the results and ideas for further research?

The ICD-10 states that “excessive consumption of pornography” and “excessive sexual urge,” which are diagnostically similar, define hypersexuality (F52.7) as an amplified yet “nondeviant” manifestation of sexual activity. Apart from the ICD-10 classification, the ICD-11 disease classification of excessive consumption of pornography is explained as “impulse control disorder.” A consistent pattern of inability to control strong, recurrent sexual impulses or desires that result in repeated sexual behavior characterizes this type of disorder. The ICD-11 says that “this pattern of not being able to control intense sexual urges or compulsions and the resulting repetitive sexual behavior manifests itself over a long period” and causes a lot of trouble in personal, family, and social lives (Kafka, 2010; Kraus et al., 2018).

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