Individuals who use psychedelics may experience improvements in sexual function, according to a recent study published in Scientific Reports. The study involved nearly 300 participants who reported increased enjoyment of sex, arousal, satisfaction, attraction to their partner, self-perceived attractiveness, and ability to connect with their partner after using psychedelics. However, the study’s results should be interpreted with caution, as they were based on self-report data and did not include formal diagnoses or assessments by professionals.
Dr. David Hellerstein, a clinical psychiatry professor, commented on the study, stating that while the findings are intriguing, further research is necessary to validate them. He also noted that participants’ expectations and the absence of a placebo group could have influenced the results.
Dr. Michele Leno, a licensed psychologist, emphasized the emotional aspect of sexual activity, explaining that thoughts and feelings before sex can impact the outcome. She suggested that psychedelics may decrease inhibitions and make individuals feel more at ease without affecting their performance.
Dr. Hellerstein added that psychedelics have been shown to enhance social connections and decrease self-focused worry, which may contribute to the reported improvements in sexual function. However, he acknowledged that high expectations and the inability to blind participants to the treatment could have influenced the results.
Dr. Carla Manly, a clinical psychologist, highlighted that psychedelics can alter consciousness, which may be appealing to individuals who feel unsatisfied in their natural state. However, she acknowledged that not everyone prefers engaging in sexual activity under the influence of substances.
It is crucial to exercise caution when engaging in sexual activity under the influence of psychedelics or any substance. Dr. Leno warned that individuals may not be aware of their partners’ behavior while under the influence, and substances can cause irritability and moodiness. Dr. Hellerstein added that impaired judgment while using psychedelics could potentially lead to vulnerable situations.
Dr. Manly emphasized the importance of consent and the need for individuals to be in a state of mind where informed consent is possible. She also noted that substances may offer temporary relief for sexual dysfunction but may not address the underlying cause. Natural supplements, self-work, and relationship therapy are recommended for enhancing sexual function and connection.
In conclusion, while the study suggests that psychedelics may have positive effects on sexual function, further research is needed to validate these findings. It is crucial to approach sexual activity under the influence of substances with caution and prioritize consent and emotional connection in healthy sexual behavior.