Published: February 14th, 2018
For many, taking time out to enjoy oneself sexually, alone or with a partner, can be a difficult task. Often, it’s not through lack of desire, but more a case of brain overload. Many couples and working individuals lead fast-paced, complex lives. Throw in a few social media platforms and the ability for anyone to reach you at a moment’s notice, and suddenly being able to really clear your head and enjoy yourself becomes a tall order. Even if you don't fall into one of those categories, who doesn't want more intimate, relaxed sexual experiences?
CBD could be the aid to just that, a more intimate experience with your partner. Or even the chance to just unwind properly before experiencing sexual pleasure. This isn't about forced scenarios or scheduling out a whole evening to really focus, but much more of a holistic approach. CBD can be naturally and discreetly incorporated into your sex life through a variety of applications. Available in liquid or capsule form, there is a method suitable for all users.
How can cannabis be linked to the way we feel and the chemical reactions that occur when we orgasm? The answer to that lies in something that is inside all humans, the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This is a complex network of neurochemical pathways located in the brain, central nervous system, and peripheral organs. When these pathways are stimulated by cannabinoids, the key components within cannabis, there can be a variety of positive effects.
It is this manipulation of the endocannabinoid system which has peaked interest in scientists. An experiment published in The Journal Of Sexual Medicine last year looked to investigate endocannabinoid levels in healthy male and female subjects before and after masturbation to orgasm. Endocannabinoids are the cannabinoids naturally produced by our own bodies. Interestingly, scientists found that there was an increase of endocannabinoid 2-AG (2-arachidonoylglycerol) post-orgasm in study participants.
Scientists deduced that the endocannabinoid system did, in fact, play a key part in the human sexual response. The caveat being that more research would be needed to establish what role 2-AG plays when it is released as part of sexual pleasure. Manipulation of this response through cannabinoids could kick-start the process, allowing users to replicate that “reward” chemical reaction.
The complexity of the endocannabinoid system comes down to the way it is stimulated. Stimulation is achieved via receptors throughout the system, namely CB1 and CB2. Each receptor is responsible for different chemical reactions and they both respond differently depending on their location in the body. Anandamide and 2-AG are now known to play a part in the “rewarding consequences of sexual arousal and orgasm”, showing us the importance of the endocannabinoid system in facilitating feelings of pleasure.
Understanding the ECS is one thing, but what practical application is there for reducing stress and anxiety? The feeling of being stressed carries with it a number of emotions. Fear, worry, and self-consciousness can all become prevalent when stressed, inhibiting your body’s natural ability to release chemicals like Anandamide and 2-AG. Knowing these play an essential role in experiencing pleasure, it is imperative we try to remove this stress and anxiety to truly feel intimate with our partners and ourselves.
CBD, a phytocannabinoid found in the cannabis plant, takes the limelight in this situation. This cannabinoid is known to relieve stress, yet it carries none of the psychoactive properties associated with THC. For many, sexual experiences while under the influence of a psychoactive substance are not ideal, whereas CBD leaves participants in complete control, but without all the anxiety.
Whilst the ECS plays a part in pleasurable experiences, it is the sexual inhibition system (SIS) and the sexual excitation system (SES) which regulate sexual desire. Successful interaction between these two systems is what many people describe as being “in the mood”, a desire to engage sexually. As the names would indicate, the SIS is designed to inhibit our desire for sex whilst the SES is aimed at encouraging.
Improved communication and intimacy are driven by the strength of our desire. To that end, decreasing the activation of our SIS is essential. Stress actually strengthens the inhibiting abilities of the SIS, preventing the SES from stepping in.
In addition to the aforementioned, several other factors can impact sexual enjoyment. One of those is erectile dysfunction, often a result of weakened blood flow and tissue damage. A potential influence in erectile dysfunction is the build-up of a toxin called dioxin. Promoted by dietary choices and environmental influences, removal of dioxin from the body can only be seen as beneficial. As diverse as we know CBD to be, it can also aid the body in flushing out dioxin, limiting its lingering presence in our fat cells.