«Imagine that you are walking through the forest singing a song, your favorite song, the one that makes you happy and gives you« good vibes ». Then, suddenly a huge bear appears, hungry and angry. What do you do? The first thing you do, in a matter of microseconds, is to stop singing; and second, escape as fast as you can and without looking back ». This is how Dr. Nicola Tartaglia, urologist, andrologist and sexual health expert starts his explanation of how stress can influence sexual intercourse. His intention with the example of the song, the bear and the forest is to explain that the change in attitude that reflects this story is not voluntary, but spontaneous, because it represents a survival mechanism. “Something that our brain interprets as dangerous causes adrenaline and cortisol to be released, whose functions are, among others, to interrupt all activities related to pleasure and to channel the energies in the escape or attack, according to the danger,” he clarifies.
People who suffer from stress usually have a lifestyle or a way of being that makes them constantly feel the need to find a solution to a problem. The world for him or her is full of uncomfortable elements that prevent him from relaxing. In other words, following the example of Dr. Tartaglia, “they constantly cross with hungry and angry bears.”
In short, stress is a hormonal pattern that is activated in response to thoughts of fear and worry, what Anglo-Saxons call “overthinking.” And being stressed makes cortisol and adrenaline levels higher, which impairs our ability to relax.
And how does not being able to relax affect sex? In the example of the bear, sexual relations would be equivalent to the song we were singing. Yes, the one that gave us “good vibes”. And the question is, as Dr. Nicola Tartaglia indicates, it is impossible to run away and continue singing because, as he clarifies, stress interrupts or hinders pleasant activities, such as sex.
“Male erection, which is equivalent in some sense to female lubrication, can only be done in an environment of calm and relaxation,” says the expert. Thus, when a man is afraid of a trigger, or does not stop thinking about work, his brain is providing him with a scenario of fear and his body acts accordingly. And the same happens to many women, who fail or find it difficult to reach orgasms in certain situations. «Let go, cancel the defenses … That means giving up the pleasure of orgasm. That person who fails to disconnect his thoughts and connect with his body cannot reach orgasm. And that is due to the adrenaline and cortisol that produce stress. It’s that simple, ”argues Dr. Nicola Tartaglia.
How to know if I have stress
The main sign of stress is the inability to not relax in other aspects of life, and not only in sexuality. Physical symptoms are also signs such as having (or not having) too much appetite, not resting well, suffering from heartburn with heartburn, intestinal problems (especially in the case of them) and urinating often (especially in the case of them). All depend, as revealed by Dr. Tartaglia, on a muscular tension for which adrenaline is the most responsible.
From the psychological point of view, the expert affirms that stress does not stop thinking about problems that need a solution, especially at times when it is not possible to find that solution and, more importantly, at times in which we should really devote ourselves to other things: interpersonal relationships, take care of our body and attend to our mood.
Three techniques so that stress does not influence sex
To mitigate the effect of stress on sexual intercourse, the expert advises three things to his patients: reduce sources of stress, follow a sports routine and practice meditation.
Checking every day and eliminating or reducing all possible sources of stress is the first step to prevent stress from taking away our desire for sex. “Delegating, both at work and in the family, is a perfect method to reduce the position of responsibility and increase trust in others, which also improves interpersonal relationships,” explains Dr. Targaglia.
It is also helpful to have a sports routine. Practicing daily 15-20 minutes of sport reduces stress and is one of the best formulas to “burn” adrenaline deposits and “reset” cortisol levels.
And finally, he recommends meditating. «Meditation is an activity that has no religious or cultural aspects as many think. Learning to meditate means learning to identify the moments in which the brain provides fictitious and negative scenarios, causing the production of stress hormones, ”reveals the expert. Thus, becoming experts in this practice helps strengthen communication with the body and with the sensations it generates. In addition, this custom can help predispose us to become more equitable and improve body sensations, thereby increasing desire and pleasure. .