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Looking For Love
in All the Wrong Places
Andrea Kuszewski
@AndreaKuszewski
April 5th, 2014
The Science and Psychology of Porn ‘Addiction’
Porn and Addiction
•  Porn on the brain
•  Drugs on the brain
•  Are they both addictions?
•  What are the negative consequences of porn over-use?
•  Other interesting stuff!
We will discuss:
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Porn GIFS lowers the barrier to entry…. Into watching porn
Porn and Addiction
Neuroscience
Psychology
Behaviorism
Porn and Addiction
Your brain on porn
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places: The Science and Psychology of Porn Addiction
Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places: The Science and Psychology of Porn Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
A"er	
  novelty	
  wears	
  off,	
  lower	
  arousal,	
  no	
  longer	
  elicits	
  same	
  response	
  
Porn and Addiction
To	
  combat	
  tolerance:	
  
	
  
*Increase	
  novelty	
  
*Increase	
  intensity	
  
*Gets	
  dopamine	
  back	
  up	
  
Porn and Addiction
Porn and Addiction
Addiction:	
  The drug effect which happens inside the brain
Porn and Addiction
Addiction:	
  The drug effect which happens inside the brain
Brain is more permanently altered
	
  
Drug addicts are addicts for life
	
  
Porn and Addiction
Addiction:	
  The drug effect which happens inside the brain
Behavioral obsession/Fetish?: Not chemically altering the brain; WE
determine the effects
	
  
Brain is more permanently altered
	
  
Drug addicts are addicts for life
	
  
Porn and Addiction
Addiction:	
  The drug effect which happens inside the brain
Behavioral obsession/Fetish?: Not chemically altering the brain; WE
determine the effects
	
   Effects are conditioned responses to cues that are associated with
achieving orgasm
	
  
Brain is more permanently altered
	
  
Drug addicts are addicts for life
	
  
Porn and Addiction
Addiction:	
  The drug effect which happens inside the brain
Behavioral obsession/Fetish?: Not chemically altering the brain; WE
determine the effects
	
   Effects are conditioned responses to cues that are associated with
achieving orgasm
	
  
Brain is more permanently altered
	
  
Drug addicts are addicts for life
	
  
We can reset our dopamine sensitivity to erotic stimuli
	
  
Porn and Addiction
Personality Types are also a factor
	
  
•  ‘Genetic predisposition’
•  Sensation-seeking, high novelty needs
	
  
•  Sometimes porn can be a
positive thing!
•  The key is moderation, and
communication with your
partner
	
  
Porn and Addiction
The biggest difference that separates the two:
	
  
To sum up the addiction debate…
Porn and Addiction
The biggest difference that separates the two:
	
  
•  We determine the strength of porn as a stimulus
	
  
Porn and Addiction
The biggest difference that separates the two:
	
  
•  We determine the strength of porn as a stimulus
	
  
•  No matter much we don’t want it to, cocaine, if injected, will act on our
brain very powerfully—no thinking our way out of it
	
  
Porn and Addiction
Interesting bits on arousal, dopamine, and desire
	
  
Why is erotica so… erotic? Also, how is this similar to animated GIFS?
You always want the ones you can’t have
Porn and Addiction
Interesting bits on arousal, dopamine, and desire
	
  
Why is erotica so… erotic? Also, how is this similar to animated GIFS?
You always want the ones you can’t have
Sex is more than just orgasm!!
Sex = Orgasm (maybe) + psychosocial elements
Porn and Addiction
Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful?
YES.
•  Relationship problems
Porn and Addiction
Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful?
YES.
•  Relationship problems
•  Sexual dysfunction
Porn and Addiction
Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful?
YES.
•  Relationship problems
•  Sexual dysfunction
•  Skewed expectations
	
  
Porn and Addiction
Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful?
YES.
But so are lots of things (in excess)!
And still not addictions.
	
  
•  Relationship problems
•  Sexual dysfunction
•  Skewed expectations
Porn and Addiction
Thank you!
Any questions?
@AndreaKuszewski	
  
AndreaKuszewski.com	
  

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Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places: The Science and Psychology of Porn Addiction

  • 1. Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places Andrea Kuszewski @AndreaKuszewski April 5th, 2014 The Science and Psychology of Porn ‘Addiction’
  • 2. Porn and Addiction •  Porn on the brain •  Drugs on the brain •  Are they both addictions? •  What are the negative consequences of porn over-use? •  Other interesting stuff! We will discuss:
  • 5. Porn and Addiction Porn GIFS lowers the barrier to entry…. Into watching porn
  • 7. Porn and Addiction Your brain on porn
  • 15. Porn and Addiction A"er  novelty  wears  off,  lower  arousal,  no  longer  elicits  same  response  
  • 16. Porn and Addiction To  combat  tolerance:     *Increase  novelty   *Increase  intensity   *Gets  dopamine  back  up  
  • 18. Porn and Addiction Addiction:  The drug effect which happens inside the brain
  • 19. Porn and Addiction Addiction:  The drug effect which happens inside the brain Brain is more permanently altered   Drug addicts are addicts for life  
  • 20. Porn and Addiction Addiction:  The drug effect which happens inside the brain Behavioral obsession/Fetish?: Not chemically altering the brain; WE determine the effects   Brain is more permanently altered   Drug addicts are addicts for life  
  • 21. Porn and Addiction Addiction:  The drug effect which happens inside the brain Behavioral obsession/Fetish?: Not chemically altering the brain; WE determine the effects   Effects are conditioned responses to cues that are associated with achieving orgasm   Brain is more permanently altered   Drug addicts are addicts for life  
  • 22. Porn and Addiction Addiction:  The drug effect which happens inside the brain Behavioral obsession/Fetish?: Not chemically altering the brain; WE determine the effects   Effects are conditioned responses to cues that are associated with achieving orgasm   Brain is more permanently altered   Drug addicts are addicts for life   We can reset our dopamine sensitivity to erotic stimuli  
  • 23. Porn and Addiction Personality Types are also a factor   •  ‘Genetic predisposition’ •  Sensation-seeking, high novelty needs   •  Sometimes porn can be a positive thing! •  The key is moderation, and communication with your partner  
  • 24. Porn and Addiction The biggest difference that separates the two:   To sum up the addiction debate…
  • 25. Porn and Addiction The biggest difference that separates the two:   •  We determine the strength of porn as a stimulus  
  • 26. Porn and Addiction The biggest difference that separates the two:   •  We determine the strength of porn as a stimulus   •  No matter much we don’t want it to, cocaine, if injected, will act on our brain very powerfully—no thinking our way out of it  
  • 27. Porn and Addiction Interesting bits on arousal, dopamine, and desire   Why is erotica so… erotic? Also, how is this similar to animated GIFS? You always want the ones you can’t have
  • 28. Porn and Addiction Interesting bits on arousal, dopamine, and desire   Why is erotica so… erotic? Also, how is this similar to animated GIFS? You always want the ones you can’t have Sex is more than just orgasm!! Sex = Orgasm (maybe) + psychosocial elements
  • 29. Porn and Addiction Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful? YES. •  Relationship problems
  • 30. Porn and Addiction Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful? YES. •  Relationship problems •  Sexual dysfunction
  • 31. Porn and Addiction Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful? YES. •  Relationship problems •  Sexual dysfunction •  Skewed expectations  
  • 32. Porn and Addiction Is overdosing on porn unhealthy and potentially harmful? YES. But so are lots of things (in excess)! And still not addictions.   •  Relationship problems •  Sexual dysfunction •  Skewed expectations
  • 33. Porn and Addiction Thank you! Any questions? @AndreaKuszewski   AndreaKuszewski.com