Study: Watching Porn Shuts Down Areas Of The Brain

Study: Watching Porn Shuts Down Areas Of The Brain
World
Like Us On Facebook
Like Us On Facebook

Children have long been warned that self-stimulation could make them go blind. Now it appears there may be some truth in the old wives’ tale. New research shows that watching pornographic films can actually shut down the part of the brain that processes visual stimuli. In women, at least.

A team from the University of Groningen Medical Centre in the Netherlands scanned the primary visual cortexes of 12 healthy heterosexual premenopausal women while showing them porn.

The women were all on hormonal birth control which smoothed out any changes in sexual desire or arousal related to their menstrual cycles.

While looking at the women’s brains using positron emission tomography (better known as PET scans), the researchers showed them three videos.

One of the videos was a documentary about marine life in the Caribbean, while the other two were ‘women-friendly’ pornographic films.

One showed only foreplay and manual stimulation, while the other showed explicit scenesof oral sex and vaginal intercourse.

Results of the scans showed that the most explicit erotic film – the one which featured oral sex and intercourse – resulted in far less blood being sent to the primary visual cortex.

It was the same effect as is seen when people are asked to conduct a non-visual task, like remembering words, while also watching some sort of visual stimuli.

In usual circumstances, when watching films or doing any other visual task extra blood flows to to the visual cortex.

Uroneurologist Gert Holstege, one of the Groningen team, told LiveScience the results suggested the brain was focusing more on sexual arousal than visual processing during the film.

‘You have to realize that the brain wants to spare as much energy as possible, so if some part of the brain is not necessary at a high level of functioning, it immediately goes down,’ Dr Holstege told LiveScience.

He links the results to previous research which shows the brain can be anxious or aroused, but not both.

During orgasm activity in brain regions associated with anxiety falls sharply, which Dr Holstege said, may explain why women with low libido often suffer from anxiety.

One of those regions associated with anxiety is the visual cortex – if you are looking around, scanning for danger, it may be more difficult to focus on arousal.

Dr Holstege suggested that the findings may have a practical use in treating sexual disfunction.

‘If you want to have sex, as a man, you need to produce a safe situation for the woman,’ he said. ‘That is what you want, that is the most important thing.’

Elite.

Share Tweet
React
Like Us On Facebook
Like Us On Facebook

Preston Waters

Preston Waters is a thinker. He's not your traditional philosophical persona, however, as he leaves no topic untouched. Covering all the bases, from business to women, Preston Waters is the ultimate man's man for Gen-Y.

More In World

World Sean Levinson

Kim Jong-un Got Fat Because He Can’t Stop Eating Cheese

Kim Jong-un has gained some weight recently, and many believe the change can be attributed to his love of cheese. At a recent ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the death of Kim Il-sung, the founder of North Korea and Jong-un’s grandfather, the 31-year-old North Korean dictator seemed to walk with an impediment due to his size, […]

World Emily Arata

This Frog Is The New Face Of Grumpy Animals On The Internet (Photos)

The Internet has a famous predilection for animals that look unhappy. If you love crankiness, meet the Black Rain Frog. It was first discovered in 1925. The amphibian, native to South America, can only be described as looking like a grumpy avocado. It’s one species of a large group of rain frogs found across the […]

Also On Elite

Sports

NFL Players Reading Mean Tweets Prove Fans Are Still Assh*les This Season (Video)

The NFL season kicked off yesterday in Seattle, with the defending champion Seahawks trashing the Packers. It was immediately followed by a fan favorite segment on “Jimmy Kimmel Live”: Mean Tweets — NFL Edition. Players reading mean tweets is always entertaining, and in the 2014-2015 season, we can see that there’s still a bunch of […]

Envision

Guy Uses Giant Excavator Like A Boss To Build Tiny Truck Out Of Legos (Video)

Legos are probably one of the only non-digital toys children still play with. There’s something timeless about the gratification of building something out of those tiny, plastic blocks. Even some adults enjoy building with Legos, although most prefer a challenge, like building bigger sculptures, or using a tool other than hands. Juha-Pekka Perämäki chooses the latter to keep […]

World

Parents React In Worst Way Possible To Their Son Coming Out As Gay (Video)

Proceed with caution: The above video is dark and, to put it lightly, emotionally disturbing. In the video, posted by Reddit user rythymknight, 20-year old Daniel (the user) is having a conversation with his mother directly after he had come out to her as gay. At first, she tells him she loves him and that […]