If you consume marijuana, you're bound to wonder how cannabis affects sexual performance. For thousands of years, cannabis has been considered a potent aphrodisiac by many, but science has yet to find evidence that using marijuana triggers any kind of chemical response that increases our libido.
Also, everyone experiences the effects of using marijuana differently, and each person can have a different reaction depending on the strain he or she consumes. While we can't yet answer exactly how cannabis affects sexual performance and behavior, here we explain what we know it can do so far.
1. Proper scientific studies and casual polls alike consistently report mixed and unpredictable findings from participants who consume cannabis before sex. This sets cannabis apart from other substances (like alcohol, caffeine, or narcotics) that have consistent effects on sexual performance. In general, a majority of men and women report an increase in their sexual desire and drive, heightened feelings of satisfaction, and a more intimate bond with their partners after using marijuana. The negative effects of cannabis on sexual performance include anxiousness, tiredness, and a lack of interest.
2. Cannabis has been shown by research teams from Japan, Scotland, and the United States to promote the release of oxytocin, a chemical known as the "bonding hormone” which helps us feel intimately closer to our partners.
3. Cannabis often reduces the production of testosterone (the hormone that drives sexual desire) in both men and women, but this is not a permanent effect. In extreme cases, cannabis has been linked to erectile dysfunction in men and other sexual dysfunctions in both sexes.
4. Some people report feelings of dissatisfaction or poor sexual performance while under the influence of cannabis. In 2009 the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society conducted a study on cannabis' effect on sexual health and found that marijuana use “was unrelated to sexual problems in women, but daily use vs. no use was associated with increased reporting among men of an inability to reach orgasm, reaching orgasm too quickly, and too slowly.”
5. Like alcohol, cannabis lowers inhibitions, which (depending on a variety of other factors) can lead to both positive and negative effects on sexual performance.