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Wired for Sex?

How understanding Neurophysiology can help your recover.

Do you feel like the no matter what you do, you still fail at keeping sexually sober?  There is some information that may be really important for you to know.  Consider the notion that there are times when you are doing really well and others where you seem to have little control.  What made the difference?  This question is not a rhetorical as it sounds.  That means for you to successfully recovery, you have to think about what keeps you sober. . . and what doesn't. 

Let us have simple lesson in how our nervous systems work.  There is something called the Autonomic Nervous System.  This system is always functioning and helps us survive the stresses of live.  There are three divisions among the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS):  Sympathetic Nervous System (NS),  Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS) and Enteric Nervous System (EN).

The Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS) is activated when we experience danger.  It kicks in automatically to help us survive by increasing our heartbeat, our breathing, and our adrenaline.  It stops digestion, stops our elimination, the blood leaves our extremities and goes to our core.  Hence, the term "break out into a cold sweat."    Our pupils dilate, the blood leaves our pre-frontal cortex (higher thinking) and goes to our survival center, the limbic system which is pretty binary.  It is "this"  or it is "that."  It is "fight" or it is "flight."  Our speech stops, "we are speechless." I remember the term "sympathetic" and what happens here by thinking I am sympathetic to someone running from a bear.  Parasympathetic Nervous System is like a "paramedic" to the rescue.  When we are rescued we calm down.

The Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS) is the "rest and digest" systems.  We are calm, our blood goes to our extremities, arms and legs so that we can really relax and enjoy the warm sensation.  This is how mood rings measure temperature to determine our mood, by how our circulation is in our body and how warm we are.  This is why we relax so well in a hot tub, a nice bath or enjoying the warms of the sun.  In the PNS, we can digest our food properly, our sphincter muscles are relaxed we can eliminate waste.  Why is is so comforting to release urine or "pee."  That wave of relief is out Parasympathetic Nervous System kicking in.  Is it not just the emptying our our bladders or is our PNS activated.  Our pupils constrict and we have more blood flow go to our cortex.  We can think better.  Our speech is engaged. So how does this information help with sex addiction recovery?
 

So, when a person gets stressed, where anxiety and fear go up, the SNS system kicks in.  Fight or flight.  What do they do?  They run to something that can help them relax.  They trigger a PNS response by acting out.  Think about it.  It takes the Parasympathetic Nervous System to kick in to have sex.  Blood flow to the extremities.  That's right, getting an erection is based on this blood flow.  This is why erectile dysfunction can be treated by treating the anxiety behind it.  Teaching a person relaxation strategies will help the blood flow problem.  It is kind of interesting to explore this design, how one is really going to digest food, get erections and think a lot  in the prefontal cortex when attacked by a bear.  We go to the fight or flight mode and get out of there. 


The sex addict uses sex to try to calm down.  Since they use sexual behavior so much, they have difficulty thinking of something better.  Or is it because they don't have other methods they use sexual behavior?  Regardless, the solution is to help people discover other ways to activate the Parasympathetic Nervous System. 




If you or someone you love are affected by sexual addiction, consider visiting our store for the Audio Download programs or coaching from Erik Bohlin, M.A.

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