Men who watch porn are more likely to suffer erectile dysfunction, study finds

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They typically find it harder to become aroused. (Getty Images)
They typically find it harder to become aroused. (Getty Images)

Men who regularly watch porn are more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction, a new study has found.

The research suggests that it’s because they find it harder to get aroused because of what they see on their screens.

It also found that one in three men prefer watching porn scenes play out on their computers over the real thing.

In turn, this behaviour is affecting male performance in the bedroom, with cases of erectile dysfunction on the rise. Scientists are pinning the problem in the UK’s love of porn.

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British people are the second biggest consumers of porn in the world, only out-numbered by America. To put that into context, one in two people spend an average of ten minutes per day watching porn.

To try to understand the link between porn and erectile dysfunction, researchers asked 3,267 men over the age of 16 118 questions around masturbation, frequency of porn watching and sexual activity.

A third of the people asked said they found porn more stimulating than sex with their partner.

They also found that the more porn a man watched, the higher the likelihood of erectile dysfunction when it came to having sex.

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Speaking about the results, lead author professor Gunter de Win, from the University of Antwerp said: “There was a highly significant relationship between time spent watching porn and increasing difficulty with erectile function with a partner - as indicated by the erectile function and sexual health scores.

“People who watch more porn also scored high on porn addiction scales.

“We found nine in ten men fast-forward to watch the most arousing pornographic scenes.”

He added: “There is no doubt that porn conditions the way we view sex. Only 65 percent of men felt sex with a partner was more exciting than watching porn.

“In addition, 20 percent felt they needed to watch more extreme porn to get the same level of arousal as previously.

“We believe the erectile dysfunction problems associated with porn stem from this lack of arousal.”

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Erectile dysfunction levels among under 35s is fairly common, with one in four men suffering from the problem while having sex, a figure that professor de Win admitted was “higher than they expected”.

“We found there was a big range of responses. In our sample, men watch quite a lot of porn, on average around 70 minutes per week, normally for between 5 and 15 minutes per time, with obviously some watching very little and some watching much, much more.”

Now the researchers have found the relationship between the two, they will now begin to identify which factors lead to erectile dysfunction, and to conduct a similar study on the effects of porn on women.

“In the meantime, we believe that doctors dealing with erectile dysfunction should also be asking about watching pornography,” professor de Win added.