Science of Sex: Marijuana and Sexual Activity

November 30th, 2017

Welcome to the sixth installment in a new feature on Of Sex and Love: Science of Sex. In this feature, I plan to discuss the science of sexuality in an easy-to-digest format that’s accessible to the casual reader. I will also follow up with some extended reading material for people who want to know more about the subject of each post.

I try to update Science of Sex every second Saturday of the month, so check back soon.  This month’s incredibly late Science of Sex post is a departure from previous posts, but it’s one that I hope you will enjoy.

science of sex marijuana

A few studies have compared how substances affect sex drive, performance, and satisfaction. The two most commonly researched substances are alcohol and marijuana, with studies on the latter becoming more common as marijuana continues to be legalized. These studies piqued my interest!

Thus far, studies on cannabis use and sex point to some similarities to alcohol: people generally feel more relaxed and attractive when they mix either substance with sex.

Many people report being more aroused when drunk or stoned, but there’s a surprising difference between men: 50% of women reported being more aroused after smoking pot compared to 39% of men. The reasons may not bee entirely due to a chemical difference, however. Researchers suggested that women were more likely to need a reason to allow themselves to have sex, and marijuana changes the “path” to sex with which women are more concerned than men.

Cannabis use can decrease a man’s plasma testosterone (women see an opposite effect, which might account for the greater increase in desire) with greater effects on more heavy smokers. This is especially true on days after intense use. Thus, marijuana can both increase and decrease desire in men. Sperm counts also drop in these men to below 30 million per ml, which could be an obstacle for people who are trying to conceive.

Regardless of those differences, both men and women who smoke pot are likely to have more sex than those who don’t — about 20% more sex. No conclusions have been drawn, but the combination of increased arousal and decreased inhibition probably helps.

Smoking more marijuana doesn’t necessarily lead to even more desire, however. One joint seems to be the sweet spot. Doubling that still increases desire but only by half as much.

Discover how the dual-control model of sexual desire affects arousal, too.

Interestingly enough, both alcohol and marijuana affect how people choose sexual partners, but someone is more likely to sleep with a friend when stoned and a stranger while drunk. Regrets are increased after drunken sex more than stoned sex, too. Marijuana does lead to increased risky behaviors, such as not using condoms with established partners.

Most people are familiar with the phenomenon known as “whiskey dick,” which occurs when a man who has imbibed alcohol cannot become erect. Some men experience difficulty with erection while high, but not nearly as many.

The influence of marijuana on orgasm is varied:

  • Some people experience more orgasms
  • Some have more intense orgasms
  • Some have fewer orgasms or difficulty orgasming

The mind that marijuana puts someone in can prove too much of a distraction and may come with paranoia or other negative side effects that do not bode well for sex.

The type of sex that people have after smoking tends to be softer and gentler while people who drink have more aggressive sex. The sex is also likely to be slower, and many men report lasting longer after smoking, likely due to the endocannabinoid system.

At least one study finds an increased likelihood of sex during menstruation when marijuana is involved. Mixing cannabis and pregnancy may have unwanted effects. Research suggests that marijuana both reduces conception and successful pregnancies.

Pot might be a moon for desire more often than not, but there are definitely times when you should abstain, and users should beware the increased potential for risky behaviors.

Further Reading

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Before and After Toy Wipes

February 4th, 2009

Up until recently, I wasn’t using anything special to clean my toys, just soap and water. Actually, I didn’t really like having to run to the bathroom for clean up so I would often toss my used toys back in the box haphazardly and I wasn’t very vigilant about cleaning before use. As I type this, I actually find myself shaking my head. This definitely was not the safest or healthiest practice to be in and although I was improving, I wanted something even easier so that I would have no excuse not to take care of my toys ans Before and After Toy Wipes really fit the bill.

My search for a toy cleaner started at the bottled solutions but it seemed like they were still a hassle because you need some sort of lint free cloth. So I opted to go with wipes and these are in fact made by the same company as Before and After cleaner which I also know is really popular. For me, I think wipes are much preferable.

My travel size packet contained 10 single use wipes which are generously sized at 8″ x 6″.  These are much bigger than, say, moist towelettes and when you consider the area which some toys have, this is important. They’re also much thicker and more like fabric. The wipes are also lightly scented and I find the sweetness to be a little out of place. I think I’d rather use a unscented wipe and I did find that certain materials, like silicone, inherited the scent after use. One thing I like is that the packet is resealable. Lift up the flap to remove a wipe and press it back down. I have used almost all of the wipes and the flap still sticks perfectly so the wipes stay moist.

This is not rocket science. If you’re ready to use a toy, wipe it down. Let it dry and have fun (which is exactly what the packet says). Or, if you’re all done, wipe down, let dry and store for next time. These wipes take care of any lube, body fluids, lint, hair or dust which may be attracted to your toys (especially silicone vibrators and dildos). I was concerned about whether or not it was safe to use these without rinsing, especially because these wipes leave an extremely visible filmy residue. So, I have rinse with water sometimes which is okay because it’s still less work than cleaning but it’s hard for me to not rinse something when I can see the residue. With that said, I have used my toys without rinsing and I have experienced no adverse reactions.

The ingredients is small if not full of long words and includes:

Water

  • Cocoamidopropyl PG-Dimonium Chloride Phosphate
  • Benzyl Alcohol
  • Disodium EDTA
  • Fragrance

I assume the alcohol is what is doing the cleaning in this product but that doesn’t mean the toys are sterilized; if you can go one step further and periodically boil or bleach your toys, I would.  After using these wipes, I have noticed no ill effects on any of my sex toys. I’ve used these wipes on plastic, glass, elastomed and silicone and they have worked well. I would use one wipe to give a quick wipe down before use and after but these wipes are meant to be single use.

The wipes especially worked well when it comes to cleaning up after anal play. They made short work of the messy situations which sometimes arise with sex. I know Before and After cleaner is often recommended for removal of smells and, with some elbow grease, the wipes did a good job of this but did not completely eliminate some smells. I wanted to toss these in the toilet afterward (and I did, actually)  and I’m not sure how safe that was. A wipe that is completely safe to flush (and said so) would be awesome.

I also don’t know if these are safe to use on me which I didn’t do but many wipes can be used on both skin and toys.

Although I don’t have any real complaints with Before and After Toy Cleaner wipes and they are definitely better than my previous cleaning routine, there are a few improvements which could be made to really buy my loyalty. If Classic Erotica were to ensure that these wipes could be flushed, eliminate the scent and film and clarify whether they’re safe to be used on the body, this would be an unbeatable product. As is, I would probably invest in these wipes again because they are just so easy and efficient to use. /

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