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Is porn actually good for you?

sunny leoneIn the last decade or so, it's become quite fashionable for people to throw around big words like dopamine addiction and blame everything from the rise of sex crime to erectile dysfunction on porn. However, research suggests that sex addiction is not similar to cocaine or alcohol addiction, in fact there's no proof that it reflects any unique brain-related issue at all. A study which looked to prove sex addiction was an illness, actually found the opposite. A new study claims that there really is no such thing as porn addiction and those who say it actually ignore the positive benefits of porn. The study has found very little scientific data to suggest that porn actually even causes any negative side-effects. 'There was no sign that use of pornography is connected to erectile dysfunction or that it causes any changes to the brains of users,' explained David Ley, a clinical psychologist and executive director of New Mexico Solutions - a large behavioural health programme.

Despite the furore, the use of sexually explicit material explains very little of the variance in adolescents' behaviours, he added. Researchers believed that porn not only improves attitudes towards sexuality but also increases the quality of life and variety of sexual behaviours and increases pleasure in long-term relationships.

'It provides a legal outlet for illegal sexual behaviours or desires, and its consumption or availability has been associated with a decrease in sex offenses, especially child molestation,' observed Ley. 'We need better methods to help people who struggle with the high frequency use of visual sexual stimuli, without pathologising them or their use thereof.' Ley belied that porn addiction concept seems to exist to feed an industry which would benefit from providing services to the 'addicted'.

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Earlier, Dr Levy had written in his book The Myth of Sex Addiction, 'Most importantly, unlike those who've become dependent on alcohol or drugs, an individual who has been labelled a sex addict faces no serious physical consequences if he or she suddenly goes 'cold turkey'. Nobody in history has ever died from wanting sex and being unable to have it. Wanting something that you don't have and being dissatisfied, even sexually, is a condition that people around the world deal with every day. They cope with it without losing control, without lying, cheating and manipulating, and without proclaiming themselves an addict.'

What to do if you can't stop watching porn?

Dr Vijayasarathi Ramanthan, a Men's Health Physician and Medical Sex Therapist, believes you should give masturbating to porn a rest for a while if you're facing these problems. 'It's not a bad idea to give masturbation some rest for a while, maybe a week. If you do so periodically, you can check yourself whether you control your behaviour or the behaviour controls you. The main sex organ of the body is your BRAIN. The genitals only respond to what the brain says whether it is watching, smelling or touching. If you think your addictive behaviour is causing sexual problems, it is important to see your sex specialist doctor and get professional help. You need to be helped by a doctor who can understand you and manage in a non-judgemental way using evidence.'

The situation in India

Of course it would be impossible to have a discussion on porn in India considering the Supreme Court asked the government to ban porn websites while the Centre pointed out that this was very hard to do (maybe in support of the ministers who were watching it in parliament). The laws banning pornography in this country

Porn has been seen something of a rite of passage to adulthood in India for many youngsters. Why the Centre or Supreme Court would bother about porn when there are far, far graver issues to deal with is beyond our comprehension. The best reply to the debate is perhaps this legendary video from comedy sketch group All India Bakchod.

With inputs from IANS

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