What do Scientists Really Think About Pornography?

So, here’s the deal. Americans watch a lot of porn. People have varying thoughts about watching – from a harmless way to pass time alone or connect with a partner to considering it dangerous, cheating if you’re in a relationship, or morally wrong.

According to one measure done by a website called Paint Bottle, of all the data transferred online, 30% of it is pornographic in nature. Research from 2015 reveals that of this amount, men are consuming about 70% of it while women are consuming about 30 percent. Considering this research is at least 3 years old, those numbers have probably climbed considerably.

What’s interesting about the porn debate is that honestly, there’s just too many hands in the pot. The great debate about what porn does to the brain, whether it causes addiction, whether it’s bad for you, can involve many great minds weighing in. From psychologists to sociologists, neurobiologists and more, everyone has an opinion.

They all have different methodologies, different cohorts to study, and widely varying opinions and reviews of the available research. The reason that so many in the medical community can’t agree is that it’s systematically tough for all to come up with a standard view on the topic for which to base a widespread review on.

Since scientist tend to largely disagree by nature, it sounds almost like an impossible feat. Another big issue is that technology is simply growing too fast for research. Much of the research done on this subject is decades old. While under other circumstances this wouldn’t be all that bad, it’s just not adequate for this subject.

Without recent research entailing the nitty gritty on technology and pornography, the scientific community is essentially just standing in muddy water, pointing fingers. Hopefully with new research going on, scientists can come up with some solid facts.

Carstensen, M. “This is What Porn Does to Your Brain”. New York Post. (website). February 2017
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