EXCLUSIVE: ​​Is the erotica getting to you? A Psychiatrist explains how to deal with the rise in pornography

Updated on Jul 28, 2021 11:08 AM IST  |  142.7K
   
EXCLUSIVE: ​​Is the erotica getting to you? A Psychiatrist explains how to deal with the rise in pornography

The word 'Porn' is today used without hesitation in not just newspapers but mainstream media as well. Youngsters and everybody who consumes media is well aware of Raj Kundra's case where the businessman was arrested for dealing with pornographic material. This has arisen a new level of curiosity in those who don't know about the term, leading to them looking for answers on the internet which can have more adverse than positive effects. We reached out to Dr Sonal Anand, a Psychiatrist at Wockhartd Hospital, Mira Road, for her opinon on the same and suggestions on how to deal with the rise in pornographic material. Here's what she had to say:

Pornography is on the rise: good vs bad
Various depictions of pornography have existed since historic times and have played an important role in catalysing sexual desires. It has been a channel of self-satisfaction and self-exploration. It has helped foster physical and mental intimacy in many marriages and its role in the socio-cultural context has always been acknowledged. With the World Wide Web coming to the tip of the finger pornography consumers have increased exponentially and so has subsequent behaviour changes. The effects of consuming ill-informed and excess porn has become a cause of concern for not just parents but partners and spouses too.

Young age and porn :
Exposure to porn at a very young age can be disturbing. It can change the way a person perceives the natural act. It can lead to misleading objectification of the female gender. Pornography use can shape sexual practices and can be then associated with unsafe sexual health practices. It may strengthen acts of sexual violence. Online risks of sexting, exploitation, cyberbullying can become a serious problem and scar young minds for a long time.

Bingeing on Porn :
Even for adults, watching too much porn can lead to unrealistic expectations. It can cause desensitisation and lead to less excitement which can move further to performance issues. This can lead to relationship conflicts. In many cases the sexual problems are masked by other small issues and getting to the bottom of the problem becomes difficult.

Addictions :
Pornographic addiction is a real disorder just like alcohol addiction, pathological gambling or gaming addictions. It needs to be diagnosed and treated by a mental health professional.

Relationship and self problems Sometimes pornography users face the problem of associating arousal with a virtual image and they can find difficulties with real sexual experiences. It can become arduous to understand the partner’s needs and hinder meaningful real-life relationships leading to feelings of self-doubt and in some cases anxiety and depression. Loss of personal integrity and preference for social isolation can be seen in pornography bingeing people.
   
What can help?
Taking the middle path seems like a good solution here. Keeping a watch on how much time one spends using pornography can help in getting the upper hand. It could be timed to a healthy way of looking at sexual health. One must always reenforce and understand the difference between real and virtual and know what to expect out of the consumption. Many effects of pornography ultimately depend on the person consuming it.

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