Pot Users Have More Sex, Study Says

Where there is smoke, there tends to be fire, say medical researchers who found frequent marijuana users have about 20 percent more sex than those who abstain. The study, which analyzes data from 50,000 reproductive-aged Americans, is the first in the United States to examine the relationship between sex and marijuana use at population scale.

They found that people who smoked pot had more active sex lives, and that the more often the marijuana use, the more frequently they had sex.

To examine the relationship between marijuana use and frequency of sexual activity, the researchers looked at survey results from about 50,000 people in the USA who took the National Survey of Family Growth, a federal survey that collects information on family relationships, reproductive health and drug use.

The researchers found that the women in the study who said they hadn't used marijuana in the past year reported that they'd had sex an average of six times in the previous month. Among men, marijuana users had sex 6.9 times a month, compared with 5.6 times for nonusers.

"The overall trend we saw applied to people of both sexes and all races, ages, education levels, income groups and religions, every health status, whether they were married or single and whether or not they had kids", said Eisenberg.

The US National Institute of Drug Abuse estimates that over 20 million adult Americans use marijuana.

The findings contradict earlier assumptions by Eisenberg and others that pot use could be related to sexual problems. "If anything, it's associated with increased coital frequency", said senior study author Michael Eisenberg, assistant professor of urology, according to the university press release.

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"Indeed, in 2016, it was estimated that 13 percent of USA adults were using marijuana compared with 7 percent in 2013", the two researchers wrote.

"It's unclear from the data if people had marijuana in their system before or during sex", Palamar said. However, studies have also shown that too much marijuana use can decrease sperm count, and while men may want to have sex more, orgasm may be a challenge. "I've kind of fallen back on counseling men on marijuana use the way I would on tobacco cigarette use - that it's not good, it leads to vascular disease that can impair function".

Survey participants were quizzed on how often they engaged in heterosexual intercourse over the last month, as well as how frequently they consumed cannabis in the a year ago. More frequent users - those who told researchers they smoked weekly or daily - reported more sex than less frequent users.

"The personality type issue is certainly possible", Eisenberg said.

"Given the increasing use, the effects of marijuana use on adult health and function are increasingly relevant".

The findings can be found published online in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

  • Marjorie Miles