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Research: Cannabis & Sex

Liquid Life Research: Cannabis and Sex

Introductions and image by @SuperFunker.

1) Palamar (2018) offered an overview of previous research regarding sex and the use of Alcohol, Ecstasy and Cannabis.

Alcohol & Sex

  • Risky sexual behavior.
  • Multiple partners.
  • Unsafe situations.
  • Inconsistent condom use.
  • Negative health outcomes.
  • Increased sensation.
  • Difficulty maintaining an erection.

Ecstasy & Sex

  • Risky sexual behavior.
  • Multiple partners.
  • Inconsistent condom use.
  • Increased sensuality.
  • Delayed orgasm.
  • Difficulty maintaining an erection.

Cannabis & Sex

  • Risky sexual behavior.
  • Multiple partners.
  • Inconsistent condom use.
  • Increased arousal.
  • Increased sexual duration.
  • Enhanced orgasm.
  • Despite reports of increased arousal, one study suggested difficulty maintaining an erection.

In Palamar’s survey of 697 nightclub participants, 18 to 25 year old men and women were asked a series questions regarding sex and the use of Alcohol, Ecstasy and Cannabis.

Alcohol & Sex

  • Increased sexual extroversion.
  • Feeling more attractive.
  • Increased perception in attraction to others.
  • Increased feeling of self-acceptance.
  • Reduction in social anxiety.
  • Decreased inhibitions.
  • Increased sexual intensity.
  • Decreased in physical sensitivity.
  • Greater sexual duration.
  • Sexual dysfunction more often among men than women.
  • Regret after sex.

Ecstasy & Sex

  • Increased sexual extroversion.
  • Increased sexual intensity.
  • Greater sexual duration.
  • Greater sexual enjoyment.
  • More intense orgasms.
  • Increased orgasm frequency.
  • Increased sensuality.
  • Sexual dysfunction more often found among men than women.

Cannabis & Sex

  • Increased sexual extroversion, but less than Alcohol and Ecstasy.
  • Increased sexual intensity.
  • Greater sexual enjoyment.
  • More intense orgasms.

A comparison of self-reported sexual effects of alcohol, marijuana, and ecstasy in a sample of young adult nightlife attendees.

Abstract
Alcohol, marijuana, and ecstasy (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine [MDMA], ‘Molly’) are among the most prevalent substances used by young adults; however, few studies have focused on the specific sexual effects associated with use. Examining subjective sexual effects (e.g. increased libido) associated with use can inform prevention efforts. Data were analysed from 679 nightclub and dance festival attendees in New York City (ages 18–25) to examine and compare self-reported sexual effects associated with use of alcohol, marijuana, and ecstasy. Results suggest that compared to marijuana, alcohol and ecstasy were more strongly associated with heightened perceived sexual effects (i.e. perceived sexual attractiveness of self and others, sexual desire, length of intercourse, and sexual outgoingness). Increased body and sex organ sensitivity and increased sexual intensity were most commonly associated with ecstasy use. Sexual dysfunction was most common while using alcohol or ecstasy, especially among males, and females were more likely to report sexual dysfunction after using marijuana. Post-sex regret was most common with alcohol use. Alcohol, marijuana, and ecstasy each have different sexual effects; therefore, each is associated with different risks and benefits for users. Findings can inform prevention and harm reduction as young adults are prone to use these substances.

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2) Sun (2017) analyzed survey data and found that the use of Cannabis is associated with an increase in sexual frequency.

Association Between Marijuana Use and Sexual Frequency in the United States: A Population-Based Study.

Abstract
Background
Marijuana use is increasingly prevalent in the United States. Effects of marijuana use on sexual function are unclear, with contradictory reports of enhancement and detriment existing.

Aim
To elucidate whether a relation between marijuana use and sexual frequency exists using a nationally representative sample of reproductive-age men and women.

Methods
We analyzed data from cycle 6 (2002), cycle 7 (2006–2010), and continuous survey (2011–2015) administrations of the National Survey of Family Growth, a nationally representative cross-sectional survey. We used a multivariable model, controlling for demographic, socioeconomic, and anthropographic characteristics, to evaluate whether a relationship between marijuana use and sexual frequency exists.

Outcomes
Sexual frequency within the 4 weeks preceding survey administration related to marijuana use and frequency in the year preceding survey administration.

Results
The results of 28,176 women (average age = 29.9 years) and 22,943 men (average age = 29.5) were analyzed. More than 60% of men and women were Caucasian, and 76.1% of men and 80.4% of women reported at least a high school education. After adjustment, female monthly (incidence rate ratio [IRR] = 1.34, 95% CI = 1.07–1.68, P = .012), weekly (IRR = 1.36, 95% CI = 1.15–1.60, P < .001), and daily (IRR = 1.16, 95% CI = 1.01–1.32, P = .035) marijuana users had significantly higher sexual frequency compared with never users. Male weekly (IRR = 1.22, 95% CI = 1.06–1.41, P = .006) and daily (IRR = 1.36, 95% CI = 1.21–1.53, P < .001) users had significantly higher sexual frequency compared with never users. An overall trend for men (IRR = 1.08, 95% CI = 1.05–1.11, P < .001) and women (IRR = 1.07, 95% CI = 1.04–1.10, P < .001) was identified showing that higher marijuana use was associated with increased coital frequency.

Clinical Implications
Marijuana use is independently associated with increased sexual frequency and does not appear to impair sexual function.

Strengths and Limitations
Our study used a large well-controlled cohort and clearly defined end points to describe a novel association between marijuana use and sexual frequency. However, survey responses were self-reported and represent participants only at a specific point in time. Participants who did not answer questions related to marijuana use and sexual frequency were excluded.

Conclusion
A positive association between marijuana use and sexual frequency is seen in men and women across all demographic groups. Although reassuring, the effects of marijuana use on sexual function warrant further study.

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3) Baggio (2018) found that Cannabis use resulted in an increase in sexual frequency, multiple partners and an increase in birth rates.

Sex, Drugs, and Baby Booms: Can Behavior Overcome Biology?

Abstract
We study the behavioral changes due to marijuana consumption on fertility and its key mechanisms, as opposed to physiological changes. We can employ several large proprietary data sets, including the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, Nielsen Retail Scanner database, as well as the Vital Statistics Natality files and apply a differences-in-differences approach by exploiting the timing of the introduction of medical marijuana laws among states. We first replicate the earlier literature by showing that marijuana use increases after the passage of medical marijuana laws. Our novel results reveal that birth rates increased after the passage of a law corresponding to increased frequency of sexual intercourse, decreased purchase of condoms and suggestive evidence on decreased condom use during sex. More sex and less contraceptive use may be attributed to behavioral responses such as increased attention to the immediate hedonic effects of sexual contact, delayed discounting and ignoring costs associated with risky sex. These findings are consistent with a large observational literature linking marijuana use with increased sexual activity and multiple partners. Our findings are robust to a broad set of tests.

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