Sex and drugs
Many drugs, both legal and illegal, have side effects which impact on the user's sexual functions. For example, the side effect of many legal antidepressants and antipsychotic drugs is the reduction of sexual desire.
Other drugs, such as alcohol, are notorious for being used to render unknowing victims unconscious or severely sedated and thus easy targets for sexual predators.
Perhaps the most common drug used is alcohol. At low concentrations of blood alcohol, social inhibitions are reduced, though in higher concentrations it can also inhibit performance. Many other drugs also inhibit sexual performance.
Because drug and alcohol use is commonly presented as an excuse for unacceptable behaviour, it is however necessary to treat the idea of a direct causal relation between drug use and unsafe sex with caution. Drugs may provide a socially acceptable excuse for engaging in sexual behaviours in which people may want to engage but perhaps know that they should not.
Tobacco use (e.g., cigarette smoking), also reduces sexual function, with the incidence of impotence being approximately 85 percent higher in male smokers compared to non-smokers.
Since the partial cause of the refractory period is the inhibition of dopamine by an orgasm-induced secretion of prolactin, such potent dopamine receptor agonists as cabergoline may help achieve multiple orgasms as well as the retention of sexual arousal for longer periods. In theory, it can also help to preserve erection after orgasm.
A few drugs can actually increase sexual performance when used to treat erectile dysfunction. These include sildenafil (marketed as Viagra) and tadalafil. Bremelanotide appears to affect sexual desire directly, making it the first scientifically recognized aphrodisiac. This is also true of Melanotan II which bremelanotide is based upon. Additionally, the alkyl nitrites (poppers) have a long history of use as a sexual enhancement aid, going back about fifty years. According to the text "ISOBUTYL NITRITE and Related Compounds", many researchers agree that the alkyl nitrites may be a true aphrodisiac in the sense of promoting and enhancing sexual response.
- Love potions and aphrodisiacs have been claimed to exist in many cultures at many different periods in history; there is little evidence that any of them actually worked.
- There is a subculture of sexual activity involving methamphetamine users: see Methamphetamine and sex, Party and play.
- Nitrite inhalants ("Poppers") are sometimes used as an adjunct to sex acts
- Drugs and prostitution often occur together, with some drug users becoming prostitutes to pay for their habit, and some prostitutes becoming drug users
- Alcohol and sex
- Wine, women and song
- Post-SSRI sexual dysfunction
- Health effects of tobacco
- ^ Race K (2009): Pleasure Consuming Medicine: The queer politics of drugs Durham: Duke University Press.
- ^ "The Tobacco Reference Guide". http://www.tobaccoprogram.org/tobaccorefguide/ch12/ch12p1.htm. Retrieved 2006-07-15.
- ^ Haake, P.; Exton, M.S.; Haverkamp, J.; Krämer, M.; Leygraf, N.; Hartmann, U.; Schedlowski, M.; Krueger, T.H.C. (April 2002), "Absence of orgasm-induced prolactin secretion in a healthy multi-orgasmic male subject", International Journal of Impotence Research 14 (2): 133–135, doi:10.1038/sj/ijir/3900823, http://www.nature.com/ijir/journal/v14/n2/full/3900823a.html, retrieved 2007-07-30
- ^ Krüger TH, Haake P, Haverkamp J, et al. (December 2003). "Effects of acute prolactin manipulation on sexual drive and function in males". Journal of Endocrinology 179 (3): 357-65. doi:10.1677/joe.0.1790357. PMID 14656205.
- ^ "ISOBUTYL NITRITE and Related Compounds". http://www.virusmythpoppersmyth.org/isobutyl_nitrite_and_rela/. Retrieved 2009-07-29.
- ^ "ALL ABOUT POPPERS". http://www.allaboutpoppers.com/. Retrieved 2006-07-15.
- "Sex Under the Influence" on antidepressants, alcohol, marijuana, and ecstasy from the University of California at Santa Barbara
- Marijuana and Sex: A Classic Combination
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