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The Interconnectedness of Sexual Arousal, Desire and Pleasure

1h 30m

Jim Pfaus

Neuroscience Researcher & Psychologist
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Content and aim: Sexual desire and sexual pleasure are interwoven into the brain’s neurochemistry. Systems that excite desire, such as dopamine, and bonding, such as oxytocin, are sensitized by the systems that come online to produce the feelings of pleasure and satisfaction we have when pursuing, flirting, having sex, and experiencing orgasms with our partner(s), such as opioids and serotonin.  In this webinar we will discuss how those systems work across the sexual response cycle and how the systems for desire and bonding are activated by feelings of attraction and love.  We will also discuss how the absence of pleasure can blunt or outright inhibit the activation of desire and arousal, how this motivates people to either endure bad sex or seek out other partners, and what people can do to reignite the passion in their relationships.
Produced in 2019

Jim Pfaus

Neuroscience Researcher & Psychologist

Jim Pfaus is a Professor of Neuroscience in the Department of Psychology and Life Sciences, Faculty of Humanities, at Charles University, Prague, and a senior researcher and director of the Laboratory of Sexual Neuroscience in the Center for Sexual Health and Intervention at the Czech National Institute of Mental Health in Klecany, Czech Republic.

Dr Pfaus got interested in the neurobiology of sex at an early age. For over 30 years, he has conducted extensive research into the brain mechanisms of sexual arousal, desire, pleasure, and inhibition, working with both laboratory rats and humans. This work has revealed how sexual experience alters these systems’ function, which has helped to identify potential pharmacological treatments for desire, arousal, and orgasm disorders. Dr Pfaus has authored over 220 peer-reviewed scientific papers and book chapters and has received numerous research awards. He is the current Editor-in-Chief of the journal Current Sexual Health Reports, Associate Editor of Sexual Medicine Reviews, is a past-president of the International Academy of Sex Research, and a fellow of the International Society for the Study of Women’s Sexual Health.

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