In the brain found sex addiction
In the brain of the pornography users and addicts have found a lot in common. It is believed that an average of four out of a hundred adults in one form or another suffer from obsessive sexual desire. That is, their thoughts, feelings, and behavior are constantly turning to the subject of sex and, most importantly, to resist them, the person can not, even if such obsession is hurting your career, personal relationships, etc. In this case, often talking about sexual addiction, but it is still unclear whether such a dependence.
Have any addiction there is a clear psychological and neurological characteristics. If we take, for example, drugs, the person who is dependent on some substances, it is possible to detect specific features in the brain, and especially in behavior. But what about sex addiction in this sense is still under debate. So, last year, researchers from the University of California at Los Angeles published in the journal Socioaffective Neuroscience and Psychology article in which he admitted that no special reaction of the brain in sex addicts they found. (Sex-dependence was determined by purely psychological criteria.)
And in February of this year a group of psychologists from the United States in the pages of Current Sexual Health Reports questioned the existence of porozovskoe (that is dependent on visual images, pornographic): according to them, works about her are very few, and those that are quite dubious in terms of reliability.
However, there are those who have sex addiction is beyond doubt, and these include Michael Irvin (Michael Irvine) and his colleagues from the University of Cambridge. In an article published in PLoS ONE, they describe the results of an experiment in which researchers observed the reaction of the brain of the people who watched pornographic videos (alternatively, a demonstrated record of sports). Unlike colleagues from the University of California in Los Angeles, which used EEG, British neuroscientists assessed brain activity using fMRI.
Among the volunteers were those in which psychological symptoms pointed to obsessive sexual desire, in particular, they began to watch pornography relatively early and continued to watch it more often than other people. It turned out that "sex zatsikleno" person when viewing an erotic video especially strongly activated the ventral area and stripes of the body, the amygdala, and one of the sections of the cingulate cortex. It was precisely those areas which, if drug addiction responding to drug stimuli: the striatum is related to the processes of motivation and emotion, the amygdala determines the importance of an action and is involved in the formation of emotions, and the cingulate cortex is activated when one anticipates the pleasure from drugs.
In other words, the brain is sex-dependent people react to an erotic stimulus in the same way as a drug addicts brain responds to visual stimuli associated with the drug. Which in turn serves as a powerful argument to consider sex addiction as a clinical disease. However, in this experiment involved people with a special craving for pornography, but an abnormal love for porn is not necessarily accompanied by a high sexual activity in real life, the desire to stick to everyone you meet or counter, etc. in the same spirit. So perhaps in the future will need to conduct similar experiments with emphasis on such behaviors.
Increased sensitivity of the described areas of the brain to erotic stimuli is particularly high at a young age, however, according to the authors, the strongest it has been in people with compulsive sexual behavior. This is due can be a abnormal job striped body, and weak control by the frontal cortex, which is known to helps to control our impulses and desires.
Themselves the authors emphasize that the clinic has the results to use is not worth it – in this case, it is not about a diagnostic test, allowing to define porn(or sex-)dependent, but only that such dependencies can be explicit neurological symptoms.