There exists in our society today a wide misconception that all stress is toxic. It is common for people to do everything in their power to avoid stress. Yet, it is important to understand that there is healthy stress, unhealthy stress, and what happens when our bodies don’t react to stress in a healthy manner.
Firdaus S. Dhabhar, a professor University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine has shared that “the process of evolution did not select for the biological stress response to sicken, handicap, or kill us, but rather to help us survive” (2018). Dhabhar continues “numerous studies have shown in humans and animals, that short-term stress experienced at the time of immune activation induces a significant enhancement of the ensuing immune response. Studies have also shown short-term stress induced enhancement of mental performance” (2018).
Now, you may be wondering why we are talking about stress on a Blog that mainly shares information about the harms of pornography, and how one can find healing. “In short, when a person is suffering from addiction, their stress response and their addiction become intertwined in unhealthy ways. Instead of driving them to respond appropriately to life’s challenges, stress and anxiety will instead drive them to their addiction. Likewise, anytime they’re cut off from their addiction, they will experience intense feelings of stress and anxiety (also known as withdrawal), creating an unhealthy cycle in which all roads seem to lead to the same addictive substance or behavior” (Fight the New Drug).
While stress does not cause pornography addiction, unhealthy ways of coping with stress can cause the pornography addiction to spiral out of control. We hope these tips from the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion will help you to take healthier steps in managing the stress in your life, whether or not you are battling with a porn consuming habit:
Plan your time- do what is most important first, and be realistic of how long each task will take.
Prepare yourself for stressful events like a hard conversation with a loved on
-Picture what the room will look like and what you will say
-Think about different ways the conversation could go—and how you could respond
-Have a plan for ending the conversation early if you need time to think
-Try deep breathing or mediation
-Stretch or take a hot shower to relax your muscles
-Aim for 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity
-Do strength activities like push-ups or lifting weights at least two days a week
-Talk to friends and family
-Reach out to a mental health professional
Dhabhar, F. S. (2018, March 26). The short-term stress response – mother nature’s mechanism for enhancing protection and performance under conditions of threat, challenge, and opportunity. Science Direct. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0091302218300293
Fight the New Drug. (n.d.). How porn can contribute to an unhealthy cycle of stress. https://fightthenewdrug.org/how-porn-can-contribute-to-an-unhealthy-cycle-of-stress/
Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. (2022, July 20). Manage stress. Manage Stress - MyHealthfinder. https://health.gov/myhealthfinder/health-conditions/heart-health/manage-stress#take-action-tab