Sex, drugs and taking risks

Drugs are often used to enhance or transform sexual experiences. But, as with any drug use, the risks are substantial. And, furthermore, if you don't know what you are doing, the experience can be spoilt rather than enhanced.

Drugs like alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines and barbiturates are often used to reduce or remove inhibitions and/or produce pleasurable feelings and sensations that could lead one to feel sexually aroused.

Stimulants, in particular, can temporarily boost the ego, leading to increased confidence in sexual situations.

Boosting sensory sensation
Psychedelic drugs can make sensory stimuli appear more vivid and overwhelming than it would under normal conditions. Furthermore, it can also impact on the user's perception of time, making an orgasm seem longer than what it really is.

Studies have however indicated that orgasms experienced by dagga users in reality do not last any longer than normal orgasms.

Some drugs, such as amyl nitrate (poppers), may increase orgasmic sensations by boosting blood flow to the genitals. Poppers, in particular, are associated with intense orgasms.

Drugs like cocaine and ketamine are often used with Viagra, since they can cause erectile problems.

Certain drugs, like crystal meth (tik), can also bring about the dulling of pain receptors – something that can lead to prolonged and rougher sex.

Not all its made out to be
Instead of the above-mentioned effects, drugs can often lead to the contrary – decreased or no sexual function. And taken over longer periods, some drugs can lead to a severe drop in libido and in some cases erectile dysfunction.

Furthermore, the dulling of pain receptors caused by some drugs may lead to rougher sex and an increased risk of tearing and bleeding, which in turn, could increase the risk for the transmission of sexually transmitted infections.

Many of these drugs also impede the ability to make decisions, decrease motor function, and cause a distorted view of reality. This can make users vulnerable to sexual and other forms of abuse.

All the usual risks
The fact that you are using a drug for sexual purposes, does, of course, not mean you are exempt from all the usual risks related to drug use or abuse.

A drug like amyl nitrate may, for example, cause dizziness, severe headaches, unconsciousness, and a dangerous drop in blood pressure.

The impact of drug abuse or addiction can be severe and debilitating and it is important that you know exactly what you are doing if you do decide to experiment. – (Marcus Low, Health24, May 2006)

Visit our Substance abuse or Sex Centre for more information.

April 2006

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