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Does Marijuana Help with Problems in the Bedroom?
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Summary: Marijuana may actually help with sex frequency and pleasure, according to data and studies on the topic.

A study in this week’s Journal of Sexual Medicine has many scratching their heads. The assumption that marijuana was like alcohol when it comes to sexual performance is wrong. While everyone knows that alcohol can make it hard for men to perform during sexual activity, marijuana can actually help.

  
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Assistant professor of urology, Dr, Michael Eisenberg, got the idea that more research was needed on the topic when patients visiting the Stanford University Medical Center for bedroom related problems would often ask if they needed to smoke less marijuana when going through the standard questions on their regular activities. Dr. Eisenberg thought that since marijuana is being legalized in many states that a better understanding of the effects on sexual performance was needed.

Dr. Eisenberg’s study looked at data from the National Survey of Family Growth. The government’s survey asked over 28,000 women and nearly 23,000 men how frequently they had sex in the four weeks prior to the survey. It also asked how often they used marijuana in the past year. He said, “Usually, people assume the more frequently you smoke, the worse it could be when it came to sex, but in fact, we learned the opposite was true.”

The data from that survey found shows that women not using marijuana had sex six times on average over the past four weeks. Women using marijuana daily had sex 7.1 times on average. Men not using marijuana reported having sex an average of 5.6 times in the past four weeks while man using marijuana daily were having sex 6.9 times in the past four weeks on average.

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Dr. Eisenberg said, “We were surprised to see the positive association between users. This was across the board: marital status, race, none of that mattered.” The study only focused on heterosexual sex and didn’t provide an explanation for the connection between sex and marijuana. From what he has learned from previous studies using humans and rodents, marijuana may actually be increasing arousal. However, studies also indicate that smoking marijuana can decrease sperm count and make reaching orgasm more difficult.

Associate professor Joseph Palamar in the Department of Population Health at New York University said, “It can have a different impact on different people.” While Palamar is not connected with this study, he has followed the topic. He noted some flaws of the study such as if “people had marijuana in their system before or during sex.” He says someone may smoke marijuana in the morning but not have sex until the evening so the marijuana is not in their system anymore. He wants to see a study that shows more evidence on the effect of frequency.



His study compared the sexual experience of those using marijuana versus under the influence of alcohol. Looking at just 24 people, he found that people under the influence of either substance had increased feelings of self-attractiveness. Alcohol made people feel more social and bold, making connections with potential partners easier. However, those using alcohol reported more regrets about who they had sex with, being less choosy about their partners, whereas those using marijuana were more selective about their partners. Since marijuana is not legal everywhere, many have to smoke marijuana in secret, making for more intimate moments.

Trying to determine if marijuana makes sex more enjoyable is hard since people react to it differently. Some reported having more sensitivity during sex while others said they got “lost in their own heads” and didn’t pay very much attention during the act, thus not enjoying it as much. Palamar added, “And if marijuana makes you paranoid, as it does with some people, it could really, pardon the pun, screw your ability to have an orgasm.” Some women reported vaginal dryness when regularly smoking marijuana, limiting their sexual pleasure.

The effectiveness or not of marijuana for sexual activity cannot be directly pinpointed. There are so many factors regarding how one reacts to the substance. One study showed greater sexual pleasure when using marijuana compared to alcohol while the other showed great frequency of sex when using marijuana daily.

Do you think there are other factors to consider when considering the lifestyle of many of smoke marijuana compared to those that don’t use it at all? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

To learn more about the legalization of marijuana, read these articles:

Photo: commons.wikimedia.org



 

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