Are the internet and pornography just "creators of monsters”?

Are the internet and pornography (the latter now enjoyed almost exclusively through the first) just generators of psychological or sexual pathology? Or can they, in some cases and as many sexologists seem to believe, after overcoming various ethical issues, play a role in sexual diagnosis and even therapy in adult couples?

The role of the Internet in the clinical practice of the sexual health care professionals is very important, but multifaceted and presenting both shadows and lights. Pornography on the Internet is singled out as the culprit within the male population of the onset of problems related to sexual performance. This is certainly true when obsessional traits are present, or where it’s not adequately controlled. As to adolescents, it is well known that unmonitored Internet use may place them at significant risk, such as cyber bullying, unwanted exposure to pornography, and potentially revealing personal information to sexual predators.

The major risk of pornography is the fact that individuals (mainly young and inexperienced people) may consider the pornographic performance as the model for an ideal sexual life. Women depicted as sexual slaves exclusively aiming the male pleasure, men with oversize genitals, always in a never ending erection, would easily, in weak personalities, induce a dramatic performance anxiety as well macho chauvinism. In this cases, the Internet and related pornography are possible ways to induce sexual diseases.

On the other hand, many sex therapists consider pornography as a means of patient analysis as well as the treatment of certain sexual dysfunctions. A positive correlation between perception of the sexual relationship and partner, and a moderate consumption of pornography, has been shown by scientific studies. In consumers of pornography, compared with those who do not use it, there tends to be a greater intimacy with the partner. The use of pornography, therefore, should not be seen as just a way to avoid intimacy, but also as an expression of voluntary research.
On condition that the exchange of information on the Internet take place through contact with experts and set limited to adult couples, this can lead to a greater knowledge and understanding of oneself. Pornography is always meant to be used within the context of sexual therapy for couples, aimed at improving the sex life and intimacy within a relationship.



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Popovic M. Arch Sex Behav 2011;40:449–456.


Malamuth N, Huppin M. Adolesc Med Clin. 2005;16(2):315-326.

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