Can Marijuana Affect Your Sexual Functioning? Here’s What You Need to Know

Marijuana Negatively Affect Sexual Functioning in Men
Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.
 

It’s no secret that marijuana can affect your health: these days the media is filled with debates and discussion about the pros and cons of using this plant. But does it affect your sexual health? The statistics[1] show that marijuana use and sexual disorders often go hand in hand.

We will take you through everything you need to know by giving a quick overview of the plant and its legal history before looking at how cannabis influences your sexual functioning.

What Is Marijuana?

Marijuana is a plant that can be smoked, vaporized, or cooked into food to give the user a buzz or a high. One of the main chemicals in marijuana that give you this kick is called THC, which stands for delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol.

What happens in your body when you use cannabis? Dopamine and Norepinephrine are the neurotransmitters (i.e., natural chemicals) in your brain that help controls your mood, body, and thinking.

When you use weed, the THC changes the levels of these chemicals[2] and this can make you feel anything from euphoria, relaxation, or lethargy; to paranoia, extreme hunger, or uncontrollable giggles.

Has It Been Legalized?

Marijuana Been Legalized

Weed is still illegal in many countries, even though the last decade has seen laws and public perceptions toward it relaxing a great deal.

For example, in many U.S. states, people are now allowed to use the herb without worrying, even though marijuana is still technically illegal under Federal Law.

With this loosening of the law and the fact that some doctors are prescribing cannabis as a medication, more and more people are starting to use this plant for health reasons or just to have a plain old good time.
Marijuana And Your Sexual Health

But how does cannabis affect your sex life? We know that high doses reduce* your body’s testosterone levels[3] and cut the amount of blood flowing through your skin cells[4]. As you can guess, your hormones and blood-flow are very important when it comes to your sexual functioning.

It’s not so surprising, then, that the research[5] shows a close link between marijuana use and sexual problems. Let’s take a quick look at some of the more common male sexual disorders that are affected by marijuana.

Erectile Dysfunction

Stay Hard Long

This involves a man struggling to get hard or to stay hard long enough to have sex. The possible causes of erectile dysfunction range from medical and psychological disorders to stress and relationship problems.
Can marijuana lead to this condition? One study[6] shows that users are twice as likely to have erectile dysfunction, compared to other men!

Inhibited Orgasm

Also known as Male Orgasmic Disorder, this happens when a man takes uncomfortably long to orgasm. Some men with this disorder are completely unable to climax at all. Either of these situations can make sex an unpleasantly stressful experience.

Using marijuana may trigger Male Orgasmic Disorder for some men; for others who already have the disorder, smoking weed may worsen their condition. One recent research study[7] showed that men who used cannabis every day were four times more likely to struggle to orgasm.

Low Libido

Loss of low libido

People with low libido have lost interest in sex, which often puts a serious strain on their relationships.

Even though some men say that smoking marijuana makes them excited for sex in the moment, we know that using too much reduces* the amount of the male hormone – testosterone – flowing through your blood.

This means that using marijuana over the longer term could lead to a loss of libido.

Premature Ejaculation

Premature ejaculation is a very common sexual disorder which causes you to orgasm too quickly during sex. This may leave you feeling out of control* and filled with shame or embarrassment, even though this need not be the case, as the causes of premature ejaculation are often out of a man’s control*.

The research shows a very clear link between cannabis use and premature ejaculation– they seem to go hand-in-hand.

Suffer From Premature Ejaculation

For example, a recent study[8] of 8656 people showed that people who use marijuana every day are 3 times more likely to be early ejaculators! The more often they smoked, the more likely they were to struggle with PE.

Why does this link exist? At this point, we don’t know for sure. According to the researchers, some men with premature ejaculation might be smoking more weed because they think it will make them last longer.

But on the other hand, marijuana might cause this condition, making a man to ejaculate faster than he normally would. Whatever the explanation, if you are interested in preventing premature ejaculation, you should think carefully about how marijuana might be affecting your sexual health!

So Is It Even Safe To Use Marijuana?

Even though marijuana can be used to treat* illnesses like glaucoma and chronic pain, this doesn’t mean that the drug is harmless. Quite the opposite[9]: cannabis use can lead to addiction, memory problems, lung cancer, and slowed brain development in adolescents.

Also, you should think twice before lighting up if you have a history of psychiatric disorders in your family, as using cannabis[10] can trigger episodes of psychosis, depression, anxiety, or mania in people who are at risk.

Moreover, you might be at risk of developing “Cannabis Use Disorder” – an official psychological condition which is diagnosed in people who overuse the drug.

What Are The Signs Of Overuse?

Have you gained or lost a large amount of weight since you started using marijuana? Do you need more and more of weed to get the same kick? Are you spending too much time, energy, and money on this habit?

Maybe you get horrible withdrawal symptoms whenever you try to stop*: irritability, anxiety, cravings, and disturbed sleep? Is marijuana use messing with your work and relationships, making it harder for you to live your life?

If you are worried that you may be overusing marijuana, find some support* by speaking to your doctor, psychologist, or drug counselor.

Marijuana Affect Body Info

Bringing it all Together

In the last decade, states and countries around the world have started to loosen their legal restrictions on marijuana use. People’s attitudes and opinions toward the drug have also begun to relax. You probably don’t need an official statistic to tell you that lots of people like to smoke weed.

But just in case you’re not convinced, here it is: in the United States, 12% of people above the age of twelve use cannabis[11] – that’s more than any other illegal substance.

With this growing acceptance of the herb in our society, we need to keep thinking carefully about the possible risks that we could face.

Along with other health issues, we now know that marijuana is linked to many types of male sexual dysfunction, including premature ejaculation. When it comes to your sexual health, make sure that you’re in the know: don’t end up as just another one of the statistics mentioned in this article!

Image Credits
Feature Image: Shutterstock.com
In-Post Image: Shutterstock.com & bestdrugrehabilitation.com

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Author

Expert Author : Daniel Sher (Consumer Health Digest)

Daniel Sher is a registered clinical psychologist, practicing in Cape Town South Africa. He serves as a professional consultant for the Between Us Clinic, which provides sex-therapy online programs for men and couples experiencing premature ejaculation.