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2023 Study: Cannabis for Sexual Functioning & Satisfaction

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A 2023 study entitled "The Influence of Cannabis on Sexual Functioning and Satisfaction" that was published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Cannabis Research examined "the perceived influence of cannabis on sexual functioning and satisfaction."

The legs of a couple in bed peak from beneath the sheets.
Does cannabis improve sex?

The researchers employed Kaplan's and Masters and Johnson's sexual response cycle (desire, excitement, orgasm, plateau, resolution). "Given increased attention in the research literature to the potential benefits of cannabis and the lack of research on the sexual benefits of cannabis use, the current study was completed," noted the scientists.


Data was gathered from a sample of 811 participants who were 18 to 85 years old. The majority were females (65 percent) and white (79 percent). Twenty-five percent of study participants identified as LGBTQIA+ and were in a monogamous sexual relationship.


Sexual Satisfaction & Sensuality

Cannabis for Sexual Functioning & Satisfaction. The report noted that sexual satisfaction involves both emotional and physical satisfaction. "Sensuality involves the different sensual effects (touch, taste, smell, sound, and sight) that are associated with sex," reported the scientists. They explained that sexual satisfaction is influenced by sexual functioning and sensuality and, therefore, sexual satisfaction may be considered to be a component of the sexual response cycle.


Marijuana may have sexually stimulating effects and can "intensify sexual experiences."

For decades it has been reported that marijuana may have sexually stimulating effects and can "intensify sexual experiences." However, the researchers noted that the exact cannabinoid profile influences sexual functioning and satisfaction "as too much tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) may cause more inhibiting effects."

A couple in bed.
Marijuana may improve sex for some

Muscle Relaxant Properties

The study also noted that some varieties of cannabis produce muscle relaxant properties and that this may inhibit the sexual functioning of a man. However, this trait of cannabis "does not impair and may be beneficial for women's sexual functioning."


"The scientists explained that the ability of cannabis to decrease anxiety may be part of the mechanism of increased sexual functionality."

The scientists explained that the ability of cannabis to decrease anxiety and increase relaxation and sensory focus may be part of the mechanism of increased sexual functionality and satisfaction. They noted that marijuana "has been found to be independently associated with increased sexual frequency, with daily and weekly users having significantly higher sexual frequency compared to never-users."

Two women smoke a cannabis joint.
Do you enjoy better sex with pot?

Cannabis for Sexual Functioning & Satisfaction Study Results

Cannabis for Sexual Functioning & Satisfaction. The study found that age and gender did not have significant influence on cannabis use and sexual functioning and satisfaction. More than 70 percent of participants reported "increased desire and orgasm intensity." Those who indulged in masturbation reported that marijuana "enhanced their pleasure." Other participants noted that cannabis enhanced their sense of taste and touch.


"The scientific literature regarding the influence of cannabis on sexual functioning and satisfaction is limited; more scientific investigations of this type are necessary."

The research noted that the scientific literature regarding the influence of cannabis on sexual functioning and satisfaction is limited and that more scientific investigations of this type are necessary to advance "policy, medicine, and practice."


"Expanding the sexual response cycle to include desire and sexual satisfaction provided a useful framework for this study and results supported this expanded model," concluded the study's authors. They said that cannabis consumers tend to have a "positive influence on perceived sexual functioning" and that the herb may decrease gender disparities in sexual pleasure."


View the original study.

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