Last week I posted a summary of Philip Zimbardo’s TED Talk on “The Demise of Guys,” in which he raised concerns about “arousal addictions” and the impact that they’re having on young men today. In a follow-up video, psychologist Gary Wilson takes a closer look at some of the brain research surrounding porn use and argues that we should also celebrate “The Resurrection of Guys.”
Before he goes too far, though, he has to admit that the data on how porn impacts a person’s brain is rather limited. And this is for three reasons:
- Researchers have a hard time finding young men who aren’t using porn to serve as the control group.
- Porn addiction has many of the same symptoms as conditions like OCD and ADHD. So doctors often misdiagnose porn addiction and medicate for these other conditions.
- People have a hard time believing that sex and porn can really be addictive.
Nonetheless, Wilson gives a great summary of what we can know from the curent state of the research about how porn use affects the brain. It’s worth watching for the summary alone.