Pornography has been around for many years now, however, as technology evolves so does the porn industry and the way we interact with it. The internet and the range of electronic devices we can access it from have made pornography too available and affordable for anyone, but a third element plays a big role into making this product so easy to get: Anonymity.
This means that no matter who you are, how old you are (since pornography websites may not verify your age) or where you are, as long as you have access to a mobile phone, a laptop, a tablet or a computer connected to the internet you can have immediate access to millions of free videos and images and no one would know. The secrecy factor makes it even easier becase you do not have to deal with the shame that comes with porn consumption.
While some may argue that pornography does not have a negative impact in its consumers or that it can even be of help in having healthy relationships, there is plenty of evidence that prove the opposite, research shows that pornography consumption can develop into compulsive behaviours, similar to addictions due to the stimulation of the brain’s reward system.
A study from 2014 found a significant association between pornography consumption and grey matter and plasticity reduction and changes. Moreover, research shows that pornography can shape behaviours and beliefs towards sexuality.
Another study in which 1880 participants answered a survey, it was concluded that frequent pornography users are more likely to have an interest in or try behaviours seen in phornography, even aggressive, degrading or dangerous behaviours. Other authors argue that pornography shapes beauty standards and portray women as mere objects and that men who watch pornography regularly report less satisfaction with their partner’s physical appearance, sexual curiosity, and sexual performance. Anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation are also often associated with pornography consumption.
If you want to learn more about the impact of porn on the brain and its reward system and watch this short video.