In matters of eroticism, much emphasis is placed on the importance that the mind has in a sexual relationship, especially those that occur between people who have established more or less fixed relationships and in whom imagination, fantasy, mental seduction, are the stimulants that are the supply for other circumstances than a sporadic relationship that requires confrontation and risk with a stranger.
Sex is in the brain, because despite all our developed culture, to a certain extent we are still servants of our physical and biological structures, of the chemicals that are stirred in our interior and that our reactions dictate us. Neurotransmitters, hormones, nerve terminals to which it is possible to reduce the sexual experience.
Below is a list of some of the phenomena that you experience thanks to your brain and its auxiliaries when you have a sexual encounter.
1- Size does matter.
The preoptic area of the hypothalamus, responsible for regulating mating behaviors, is almost twice as large in men compared to women, and has almost twice as many cells, a distinction that apparently begins to develop from 4 years old.
According to recent research, the male brain devotes twice as much space for sex than in the female brain. In women, vaginal, nipple and clitoral stimulation ignites the sensory cortex, albeit in separate regions. This is the reason why, unlike men, women find the manipulation of their nipples exciting because it is cerebrally related to genital stimulation.
2- “Not today: my head hurts"
The reluctance to sex, which has even become a joke and caricature, could be due to levels outside the normal serotonin, the known neurotransmitter. According to research from the Wake Forest School of Medicine, high levels of serotonin are related to a decreased libido, although in that same study it was found that people with recurrent migraines have low levels of serotonin.
3- Does sex generate mental problems?
Sex is one of the most basic forces of our nature that, however, once it is covered with culture and civilization, it seems to generate more problems than satisfactions. According to Joseph Shrand, a psychiatrist at Harvard, sex is intoxicating: literally. Its action generates a cocktail of chemicals dominated mainly by dopamine, a powerful neurotransmitter present in emotions that soon turn into passions such as excitement, desire, pleasure and rewarding sensation. And, like all chemicals, this one is also potentially addictive.
4-Obsessing with someone: also a neuro-algorythm chemist
The singular phenomenon of the misunderstanding of love-to fall irremediably into the wrong person-seems to be an effect, according to Catherine Salmon's research, of oxytocin, a neurochemical that is released during orgasm and that, in the case of women, generates an attraction with the man with whom they experienced it -without anything else.
The allusions to God during the most pleasurable moment of the climax seem not to be altogether casual, because according to the research of Andrew Newberg, neuroscientist at Jefferson University, there is a relationship between religious and sexual experience, to the extent that praying catholic nuns and buddhist monks who meditate show brain activity patterns similar to those of sexually aroused people.
6-Testosterone: the men's puppeteer
Testosterone makes men do things they did not really want to do, for example, have involuntary erections. The receptors of this hormone in the nervous system are found in the spinal cord, the testicles, the penis and, of course, the brain, so it is possible to react like this without sexual desire or the awareness of erection.
Testosterone: the difference between stability and parental instability
For a long time it was believed that men, in general, could not sustain an emotional relationship for long because testosterone pushed them to the search for new patterns, which is partially true, but not completely when it is verified, for example, that there are many parents fully capable of stability and fidelity. This is explained because testosterone levels decrease the longer you spend caring for a child.
7-How long does it take the brain to discern the sexual attractiveness of a stranger?
Stephanie Ortigue and Francesco Bianchi-Demicheli carried out a study in which they found that the brain takes only .02 seconds to register whether a person in a bathing suit is desirable or sexually undesirable.
8-How far does the brain's classification capacity go?
That first discernment is not, in any way, the only one. Sexual attraction is only the first criterion of others that are part of a calculation, if not always precise, at least complete about the probabilities of matching with another person. Located on a magnetic resonance machine, volunteers in a Trinity College investigation got it right on 6 out of 10 occasions when they selected people with whom they thought they could leave and who actually made an appointment. In this process, the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex is involved, where the physical attractiveness of a person is judged.