Porn Addiction & Tantric Alternatives

What is pornography?

Pornography, or porn, is any visual or audio material, such as pictures, videos or erotic audio stories that have the purpose of stimulating sexual arousal in the viewer or listener. Porn is easily accessible and extremely popular.

Did you know? Porn sites such as PornHub get more visitors than Netflix, Amazon and Twitter combined.

It is a wide and diverse field, catering to many preferences. Some popular categories include amateur porn, gay porn, BDSM porn, feminist porn, cam girls, soft porn, hard porn and the growing trend in ethical porn. The latter focuses more on matters of boundaries and consent, and aims to represent all body shapes and sizes, and include actors which represent people of different colours, genders, ages and races. It also aims to more fairly pay those involved in the production of content.

Benefits of porn use

Although porn can often have negative connotations, there are benefits of watching or listening to porn. These can include finding new ideas for lovemaking, and many people report an improvement in their sex life as a result of watching porn. This may be because it can help to get in touch with, or stay in touch with, the feelings of arousal in the body, and provide ideas for fun explorations.

At what point does using porn become porn addiction?

Many people regularly watch pornography without feeling the need to watch for hours on end on a daily basis. It is much like those who drink a glass of wine with their meal, and leave it at that for the night. According to Nicole Prause, a sexual biotechnology research scientist, it is down to whether the person considers themselves to be addicted. There are numerous factors at play, such as cultural upbringing, shame and libido. For example, someone who has had been brought up in a religious sect that severely shamed masturbation and sexuality, may believe that even a light use is too much, and that they are addicted – whereas it would be considered a low or ‘normal’ amount by another. According to a study done by Prause and colleague Steele, porn-addicted brains did not behave in the same way as brains of drug and gambling addicts.

This is in opposition to the 2014 University of Cambridge study that did find a link between porn addiction and brain activity. The most research in support of porn rewiring the brain has been carried out by the Your Brain on Porn (YBOP) study. According to them, the 43 neurological studies which have looked at the brain structures of Internet porn users and sex/porn addicts “offers support for the porn addiction model… [and] are consistent with over 330 internet addiction ‘brain studies’”.

Area of the brain lighting up more in those subjects who watch excessive porn compared with control group
YBOP Study

What are the problems of watching excessive porn?

It may be that you are using porn with beneficial side effects. It may also be that you are experiencing some sexual issues, which may or may not be related to excessive porn use. These are some of the most common things I hear from those who consider themselves to be addicted to porn:

  • Difficulty in getting aroused in real-life situations, and difficulty staying aroused with real-life partners
  • Needing to think about porn to become aroused in real-life situations
  • Difficulties with getting, and maintaining, an erection. Read more about whether porn-induced erectile dysfunction (PIED) is a real phenomenon. Read more about how tantric therapy can help with ED.
  • Requiring more and more stimulation, for example, watching more extreme scenes or scenarios, to get the same level of arousal
  • Anxiety about sexual performance, especially when comparing self with porn stars

How can tantric massage therapy help with porn addiction or excessive porn use?

There are a number of ways in which tantric massage therapy can help to overcome porn addiction by providing alternative approaches. Here are the top 5:

  1. Learn to be more ‘in your body’ than ‘in your head’. You don’t have to stop watching porn to do so. In fact, the ‘pendulation method’, designed by Joseph Kramer, can help to do this by switching between focusing on watching porn and then focusing on the sensations in the body. Over time, this can reduce the need for visual stimulation
  2. Get to know your body. Explore different ways to touch and wake up the sensations in the physical body. Learn about what you like, and how to ask for it. Equally, learn how to say no to something which you may not want to experience. This way, the source of arousal can shift to your own body, as opposed to any external sources
  3. Relax the body and mind to release any tension that may be stopping the flow of energy and pleasure through the body
  4. Increase the blood flow to the genital area, helping with arousal and, for men, with getting and maintaining erections
  5. Learn to connect more with real-life partners through increasing intimacy and openness

Further information

I offer individual and couples’ tantric massage sessions in Teesside (within easy driving distance from Leeds, Newcastle, York, Durham) and London. Read more about tantric therapy treatments.

Book a session

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources

https://www.dailydot.com/irl/what-is-porn/

https://medium.com/@Strange_bt_True/how-big-is-the-porn-industry-fbc1ac78091b

https://www.dailydot.com/irl/porn-addiction/

https://www.yourbrainonporn.com/

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-28252612