Tendencies Toward Internet-Pornography-Use Disorder: Differences in Men and Women Regarding Attentional Biases to Pornographic Stimuli


Pekal, Jaro; Laier, Christian; Snagowski, Jan; Stark, Rudolf; and Brand, Matthias


2018 in Journal of Behavioral Addictions,7(3):574-583

  • The results of this study showed a relationship between attentional bias and symptom severity of Internet-pornography-disorder partially mediated by indicators for cue-reactivity and craving.
BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Several authors consider Internet-pornography-use disorder (IPD) as addictive disorder. One of the mechanisms that has been intensively studied in substance- and non-substance-use disorders is an enhanced attentional bias toward addiction-related cues. Attentional biases are described as cognitive processes of individual's perception affected by the addiction-related cues caused by the conditioned incentive salience of the cue itself. It is assumed in the I-PACE model that in individuals prone to develop... READ FULL ABSTRACT
  • "As a main result of the study, we found the hypothesized relationship between attentional bias toward sexual stimuli and symptom severity of IPD in a sample of male and female participants. Furthermore, the relationship between attentional bias and symptoms of IPD was mediated by indicators for cue-reactivity and craving. The results indicate a difference between male and female individuals regarding an attentional bias for the overall and maintained condition, but not in the initial condition in the Visual Probe Task. However, regression analysis could show that sex and attentional biases in both time conditions predicted tendencies toward IPD, the interaction of both did not add further explanation of variance in IPD symptoms. This result indicates that attentional biases play a role in IPD symptoms and seem to occur independently from gender."
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