Sexual Wellness

Does Using Porn Cause Erectile Dysfunction?

Fact Checked

Understand how watching porn affects your body and see if it could be causing you erectile dysfunction.

Last Updated: 03/31/2022

Written by

Eric Ridenour

Medically Reviewed by

Dr. Paul Thompson

It's no secret that porn can be a great way to get your rocks off. There are many reasons why this is the case, including that it's quick, easy, and often free. However, there are a few things that you should know about the health effects of watching internet pornography.

For instance, it can cause ED, and it can cause your sexual desires to increase or decrease. In addition, it can lead to sexual addiction, and it can cause premature ejaculation. So, if you want to enjoy a healthy sex life, it's essential to understand how watching porn affects your body.

What is erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction is a medical condition in which a man cannot achieve or maintain an erection. This is a common problem for men over the age of 40. However, it's also a common problem for men who watch a lot of porn.

Therefore, if pornography consumption is high, it's essential to understand what it can do to your body. There are two different types of ED.

These are:

Psychological erectile dysfunction 

This is a condition in which the man cannot achieve or maintain an erection because he's experiencing mental stress. This can happen in several situations, including when you are worried about something, tired, or anxious, such as performance anxiety or depression.

Physical erectile dysfunction

This is a condition in which the man cannot achieve or maintain an erection because his body can not move enough blood to the needed areas. It's important to note that this is different from psychological sexual dysfunction. It's possible to have psychological ED without having physical erectile dysfunction and vice versa.

So, if you're experiencing psychological ED, it's essential to know that it can be caused by porn.

Other Causes of erectile dysfunction

There are many other causes of erectile dysfunction. These include:

  • Aging

  • Smoking

  • Medical conditions

  • Alcoholism

  • Medications

  • Infections

  • Hormone deficiencies

  • Stress

  • Cardiovascular disease

  • High blood pressure

The point is that several different factors can cause erectile dysfunction. So, if you're experiencing this problem, it's essential to look for a cause.

The more porn Watched, the Higher the Percentage of ED

Recent clinical reports and peer-reviewed studies that analyzed porn watching show that porn can influence sexual function. The study was based on a survey of 3,267 male porn users who answered 118 questions on their sexual behaviors, such as masturbation, sexual performance, porn viewing frequency, sexual intercourse with partners, and other sexual activity. The study team discovered that the average amount of porn viewing for all participants was 69 minutes per week.

When they compared the time spent watching porn seen with ED experiences, they discovered that 30 percent of people under the age of 35 who watched 300 minutes of porn consumption per week had ED, compared to 10 percent of those who watched less than 30 minutes. 40% of those aged 35 to 45 who watched 300 minutes per week had ED. However, just 5% of individuals spent 300 minutes or more viewing television.

Possible advantages Of Watching Porn: What's considered healthy?

Some people report viewing porn as an opportunity for sex with a partner. The most common reason you watch pornography is to increase your sexual desire and improve your performance. Another study revealed that only around 10% of people who watched sex films complained of porn-induced ED when they watched less than 30 minutes per week. It doesn't matter whether young men watch porn. The numbers are similar. Keep your relationship open and check in periodically about whether porn influences your relationship negatively or positively.

In some cases, porn addiction may lead to addiction to sex, and this may have some negative consequences for your life. It is not a healthy habit. However, the benefits of watching porn are numerous.

  • Watching porn may help to improve your relationship

  • You can learn new skills

  • It may increase your self-esteem

  • New experiences potentially improving intercourse

  • You may increase your knowledge

  • You may become more confident

  • Porn can be used as a stress reliever

  • It may help you in your studies

  • More men reported dissatisfaction with partner sex because of porn watching

Most men with ED problems during partner sexual encounters do not experience watching porn. Similar is true when someone has an ejaculation issue in their partner relationship. If the couple watched more than 300 minutes, they reduced the quality of their sexual relationship with their partner. However, this result was more substantial if they had a high addiction score.

Effects of watching porn on the body

Many people use porn as a substitute for real-life sexual encounters. When you view porn, you may think that you are having sex. However, you are not. In addition, you are not in the best possible state of mind. Internet porn can cause some issues with your body. Some claims watching porn can lead to weight gain, but there are no studies to back this up. However, research points to people who masturbate less being on average lower in weight than those who do more.

Some men have reported experiencing sexual dysfunctions because of porn. You may have a high sex drive. However, it can be a cause of ED.

How to manage porn-induced ED?

Since porn-induced erectile dysfunction can sometimes indicate a more considerable underlying medical condition, the most effective medical treatment is talking to a physician. If you feel watching pornography is a potential health problem, then there are ways to address it:

  • Take it easy on the porn. Try to watch it for only 30 minutes at a time

  • Avoid high-calorie foods

  • Avoid alcohol

  • If you're thinking about sex, talk to your partner about it

  • Try to relax (Without porn and masturbation)

  • Take a break from watching porn for a while

Pornography can cause other health issues. Lower sex drive can lead to less ambition and even exercise, leading to weight problems. You may be more likely to get ED if you're overweight because you have a more challenging time getting an erection.

Manage your diet: You may be interested in eating healthy, but you can also consume unhealthy food. The best thing to do is monitor your diet and make sure you are getting enough healthy foods.

Increase your exercise: Engaging in a few activities to improve your overall health is recommended. It is essential to exercise regularly to prevent the development of diseases.

Limit your alcohol intake: Alcohol can affect your mood, and you can end up drinking too much if you are not careful. It can affect your judgment, leading to an increased risk of having an accident.

Learn to manage stress:

How to Improve Erectile Dysfunction?

If you have porn in your system and feel like your body's sexual dysfunction has gotten better over time, you might be better off not viewing it. The symptoms may disappear within three weeks if the porn is removed. But sometimes, people may require guidance to cope with porn disorder. Seek professional medical advice to see whether your sexual health is positive, even if you don't want to watch any pornography. Other treatment options include lifestyle changes or treatment such as talking to your doctor. They can help you find out what is causing your problem and what can be done to fix it.

Consider alternative ways of dealing with the problem. For instance, you may try to stop watching pornography or find a way to cope with the situation without watching it.

Should you seek therapy?

Therapy can help you to manage the problem. It is best to seek help if you have a problem with your sex life.

A man who has sex problems and has tried everything possible to get rid of the problem should seek the help of a physician. Healthcare professionals can help you find the best solution to get rid of your problem.

If you have a sexual problem, you should talk to your partner. You can also speak to a friend. You may want to consider joining a support group.

FAQ's

How much porn can I watch without causing erectile dysfunction? 

There is no definite amount of porn that you can watch without causing erectile dysfunction. However, suppose you notice a decline in erectile functioning, sexual problems with your partner, or unhealthy viewing such as searching for violent images or even beginning to have unrealistic expectations in the bedroom or feel you may be developing a porn addiction. In that case, you will want to cut back on your porn use.

Can too much porn watching cause erectile dysfunction?

Too much video pornography use doesn't necessarily cause erectile dysfunction, but it does elevate ED risk. It's more important to be sexually active than to view porn. Other risk factors with too much pornography can include:

  • Problems keeping an erection firm.

  • Reduced sexual stimuli.

  • Fewer romantic sexual interactions.

  • Reduced sexual stimulation.

  • Other health conditions.

Can I masturbate and watch porn at the same time? 

Yes, you can masturbate while watching porn. However, there is a difference between masturbating and having sex. Some people experience greater sexual responsiveness with pornography use; however, if it leads to sexual difficulties such as reduced erection function when not engaging in pornography use, you may want to stop watching porn while having sex with your partner.

Is porn addictive? 

Yes, it can be very addictive. Porn can escape reality and can be very hard to give up. If porn watching leads to any sexual dysfunction, you may have a porn addiction and should consider seeking professional medical advice to improve your sexual health.

Is porn safe? 

It is safe to view porn in moderation. However, too much pornography use can be a sign of compulsive behavior. It can be part of a complex health issue that can cause addiction, depression, reduced erectile function, and other problems.

Can porn be good for me? 

Porn can be good for you if you have the right expectations. Porn can improve partnered sex in moderation and even help experiment with your bed partner.

What's the biggest misconception about porn? 

The biggest misconception about porn is that it's harmless. There are many adverse effects of watching porn. Mere pornography use alone is not harmful, but like drinking alcohol, it can lead to problems when not used in moderation.

Is porn-induced erectile dysfunction a real thing?

Yes, there is indeed a link between porn and sexual performance. Many studies in behavioral sciences show this to be true. In addition, there are other related factors at play that can reduce erectile function. You should continuously monitor your pornography use to ensure it does not affect your sexual functioning.

What is sexual anorexia?

Sexual anorexia is the obsessive avoidance of social, sexual, or emotional nutrition. This is similar to food anorexia in which a person denies all sustenance via eating; however, instead of denying food, those with sexual anorexia fail to fulfill their desire for connection. Sexual anorexia is a human sexuality disorder where time spent watching porn replaces partnered sex.