Pornographic Picture Processing Interferes with Working Memory Performance

AUTHOR(S)

Laier, Christian; Schulte, Frank P.; and Brand, Matthias

PUBLISHED

2013 in Journal of Sex Research, Vol. 50(7), pp. 642–652

KEY FINDINGS
  • This study found worse working memory brain processing for pornographic stimuli compared to other forms of brain stimuli.
ABSTRACT
Some individuals report problems during and after Internet sex engagement, such as missing sleep and forgetting appointments, which are associated with negative life consequences. One mechanism potentially leading to these kinds of problems is that sexual arousal during Internet sex might interfere with working memory (WM) capacity, resulting in a neglect of relevant environmental information and therefore disadvantageous decision making. In this study, 28 healthy individuals performed 4 experimental manipulations of a pictorial... READ FULL ABSTRACT
EXCERPTS
  • "The aim of the present study was to investigate working memory performance for pornographic pictures in comparison with neutral, negative, and positive stimuli in a within group design using a pictorial 4-back task in heterosexual men. The main result of the study is worse WM performance for pornographic pictures compared to neutral, negative, and positive stimuli...The study’s main result of worse WM performance for pornographic stimuli is in line with other studies addressing sexual stimuli’s impact on cognition."
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